Meet the Artisan

Manuel David Reyes Ramirez

Santo Domingo Yanhuitlan is a small Mixtec pueblo located about an hour-and-a-half north of Oaxaca City, off the Carretera Nacional toll road to Mexico City.
     Ceramic artist, sculptor and painter, Manuel Reyes, lives here with his wife Marisela, also an accomplished artist, and their two children. He was born in Mexico City in 1972 to Oaxacan parents. Reyes began studying art in 1990. He attended the Escuela Nacional de Artes Plasticas in Xochimilco, Mexico City. He moved to Cuernavaca in 1995, where he was mentored by the likes of Roger Von Gunten, Joy Laville, Francisco Lastra and Juan Soriano.
     In 2003 Reyes returned to the Mixteca, and has since then re-established his roots.
     He says the clay from here is the strongest, the best. The clay is painted with natural mineral pigments that Manuel gets from the local region.
     Some of his work is primitive. Other pieces are highly polished polychrome with three or four colors. Pre-Hispanic designs on clay come from pottery shards that Manuel finds in the region.
     While Reyes obtains his clays from many different areas, most are from four main locales: a riverbed about a kilometer from his home, upstate at Huajuapan de León, the town of Santa María Cuquila, and from Zacatecas, northwest of the nation’s capital. Each compound has different qualities. His Zacatecan clay is strong and has a sandy texture, making it suitable for sculpting his large, almost life-size human figures; more utilitarian pieces such as plates and cups are made with earth from Cuquila; pieces which he intends to burnish are sculpted from clay from Huajuapan de León; and he mixes local soil with the Zacatecan earth to yield a more malleable and easily workable clay.
     In 2016 “La Banda Mixteca” was the main master piece in the exposition “Manos y Alma de Oaxaca” in the Museum of Popular Cultures in Mexico City.  

Manuel´s Path
·      In 1999 he started working in the serigraphy workshop with the Teacher Francisco Lastra collaborating with known artists such Roger Vangunten, Rafael Cultura and Juan Soriano.
·      In 2004 he imparted Ceramic lessons to indigenous kids of the Mixtec Alta Tlaxico Oaxaca.
·      In 2004 he was an intern for Foesca.
·      In 2005 he participate in the Collective Exposition Obra de la Tierra Maravillosa in the House of Culture in Huajuapan de Leon.
·      In 2005 he participate as an expositor in the Popular Art Museum of San Bartolo Coyotepec Oaxaca.
·      In 2006 he participated in the exposition and workshop impartation in the Festival Doc. Alfonso Ortiz Tirado, in Alamos Sonora.
·      In 2008 he imparted workshops to young people and adults in the Cultural Center Huachinera Sonora.
·      In 2009 he participated in the collective exposition in the Oaxaca Painters Museum in the Festival Humanitas Pintores Mixtecos.
·      In 2010 he participates in the Permanent Ceramic and Sculpture Workshops in Yanhuitlán, Oaxaca.
·      In 2012 participates in the first Vienal Continental of Indigenous Contemporary Arts in the Museum of Popular Cultures in Mexico City.
·      In 2014 he has an opportunity to share his creations in the Exposition Un Taco de Ojo, Erotismo Popular in the Museum of Popular Culture in Mexico City.
·      In 2014 participates in Chapala Jalisco, in the Popular Art Masters Fair.
·      In 2015 participates in Chapala Jalisco, in the Popular Art Masters Fair.
·      In 2016 in Manos y Alma de Oaxaca esplendor de muchos pueblos exposition in the Popular Cultures Museum in Mexico City.

Manuel David Reyes Ramirez collection

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