Montes & Edith Albarran Duque
To Contact: This artisans page is part of the Feria Maestros del Arte website, a non-profit organization providing a yearly venue for Mexican folk artisans to come together to sell their work. If you wish to purchase the artisan's work other than at the Feria, you MUST contact them directly.
Rio Tehuantepec #172, Col. Vista del Lago,
He learned a portion of his work in a crafts school called Artesanias de Inba. Among his teachers was Maxima Velasquez Carrea of Santa Clara del Cobre, Michoácan, from whom he learned valuable designs for his work.
Cesar and Edith start with pure silver and add either copper or sterling silver to get a 9.25 mix for their work. Together they began Kutzi Joyeros in Pátzcuaro, Michoácan where they live.
They make their own wire which, to Cesar, is the most amazing part of the process because he starts with a thick wire and can make it as small as a human hair. The designs used are sometimes inspired by dreams and others come from their cultural heritage or their own imaginations.
Between the 1600s and the 1800s Boliva, Peru and Mexico grew to produce about 85% of the worlds silver production. During Mexico's 19th century war for Independence, the Spanish barons destroyed their mines rather than lose them to the revolutionaries, and the art of silver work died out for quite some time.
In 1926, William Spratling, a US. citizen and associate architecture professor from Tulane University arrived in Taxco to study Mexico and its culture. In1929 he moved to Mexico and was welcomed into the influential artistic circles there. Mr. Spratling discovered the potential talent in the locals and motivated the community artisans to create designs and rediscover the craft of silversmithing. With his own designs, he created an apprentice system of training young silversmiths with artistic talent and gave them the opportunity to develope their skill.
Over time many the art of silversmithing spread to other states in Mexico such as Michoácan. Many of Kutzi's designs are reminiscent of the Spratling era of silver jewelry making.
Their work is available throughout Mexico and the Mexican Caribbean.