Angelica Escobar. Forbes Mexico.
In an unusual participation in ZONA MACO Diseño, Louis Vuitton presented his first collection of trunks by artisans of Oaxaca: ‘The Colorful Journey LV’.
The project that began with the quest to find the most accurate way for Latin America to intervene the Louis Vuitton canvas, as artists of the international size of Jeff Koons, Takashi Murakami and Yayoi Kusama have done, resulted in a series of pieces that they reflect through art an endearing conversation between two communities of artisans guided by detail and perfection.
Photo. Angelica Escobar. Forbes Mexico.This is explained by Natalia Herrera, curator of the project and director of Atelier Cultural in Mexico, in a talk with Forbes Life. «It is the dialogue that arises between French artisans who since 1854 have perfected the art of making trunks and the architects of San Martín Tilcajete in Oaxaca, who have shown exceptional talent.»
The Casa Don Juan Workshop was chosen by Natalia among artisans from different regions of the country not only for the artistic fruitfulness of its members, but also for its ability to contribute to the development of its community. The Zapotec family that founded it has been given the task of sharing their knowledge of wood art and providing employment.
Photo. Angelica Escobar. Forbes Mexico.This work is led by Maestro Aldo Hernández. He and his parents and siblings gave life to the workshop that has gradually grown to add 25 people. After a disease diminished his craft skills, he began teaching the craft and boosting the detected skills of each apprentice.
«This project was a big surprise because we didn’t know, until the last moment, that we would collaborate with a brand as important as Louis Vuitton. It was a great challenge: we were testing so that the pigments were added naturally to the texture of the trunks», says the master craftsman and with emotion explains the tones and nahuales implicit in the six pieces that make up the collection: jaguar, snake, frog, cenzontle, rabbit and coyote.
In the Zapotec cosmogony, each person at birth receives a tona, which is an animal of power created by the fusion of two different animals, chosen from among twenty options, depending on their day and year of birth. Both the symbology of Louis Vuitton and that illustrated in the bodies of the tones are endowed with elements that refer to the beauty of nature.