Meet the Artisan

Arnulfo Xochitiotzin Cocoletzi

He is a great master of the Mexican Popular Art Arnulfo Xochitiotzin Cocoletzi (1969), whom in their natal Contla de Juan Cuamatzi, in the state of Tlaxcala, have been fruit and root of an old cloth tradition of the community.

His family tradition begun three generations behind, so when Don Melesio was only 12 years old, he had the opportunity to learn from his grandfather (who started making a kind of cashmere called “jerguetilla”) and from his father. They taught him to make wool, to spin, to color and to weave clothes. His effort for preserving traditional clothes took them to gather along with other weavers and create the cooperative Sarape Tlaxcalteca, which has exported their creations to Europe, Oceania and South America. Thanks to their dedication and abilities, they have been awarded several times; they specialize in gabanes that are colored with natural dyes, with whom they create harmonic combinations, creating geometric shapes and thick shaped figures.

Arnulfo, who is already a great teacher, is passionate about the trade, which he learned when he was nine years old and that today he teaches to his children. Also, he combines his knowledge with his teaching career, so he wakes up at five am and begins to weave, in order to take advantage of daylight; He does so until three pm when he goes to school to teach lessons.

He has been awarded several times, 1st place in Great Award of Popular Art 2005, given by the National Fund for Artisans Development (Fonart), 3rd place in 2009 and 1st in 2012, in the award of sarapes, gabanes, blankets, rugs and tapestry.

Arnulfo is concern with the weave situation in his community, where many of the workshops are closing; and still he continues to rescue the antique designs of sarapes and gabanes that are more than two centuries old, he does so by researching, studying pictures.

Arnulfo knows how to make the different kinds of weaves, like the “labrados” (carved), that implemented different techniques such board, trimming and casting, and applies to each one different designs, those that his father has taught him from his memories.

Arnulfo Xochitiotzin Cocoletzi collection

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