Conrado Villegas Alcázar, Oaxaca, Oaxaca
Maestro Conrado Villegas was born in the city of Oaxaca de Juarez in 1960. At 10 years of age, he began learning his craft working with tin in a workshop at the center of the city. At age 20, he started his own workshop and began down a path to renew the old techniques such as embossing copper and tin. Conrado also strives to return to the old Oaxacan designs, relics and sacred art with the purpose of guarding their designs for posterity.
Without a doubt one of the least known and most beautiful expressions of Mexican folk art is hojalata (tin artwork). Known by the people that work it as “the noble metal” and others as “the poor man’s silver,” tin has been shaped, stamped, punched and cut into a wide variety of artwork. Mexican artisans have specialized in mixing different elements to create unique works of art. The origins of punched metal seems to be lost in the mists of time.
Tin was used by humans as early as the Bronze Age. Because it is so soft, it can be rolled, pressed, or hammered into extremely thin sheets (tin foil), Mexico's tin art is still very popular today and it dates back in Mexico's history to the 1500s. Candleholders, plates, frames and other household objects are made from this popular metal and are often hand painted in bright colors.
In 1986, Conrado received his first diploma for participating in la Tradición Popular (Nativities Competition) from the Secretary of Culture in Mexico City. In 1987, he received a diploma for participating in the first national competition, Concurso Nacional de Miniaturas, winning honors awarded by Fonart. In 1996, he received the award, Distinción del Jurado, at a judged art show in Oaxaca for his tin art. In 2008 he returned to the same art show and won the 2nd national prize for metal working. In 2009, he won First Place in the National Competition Edition XXXIV Grand Prix of Folk Art for metal work. In 2010, Conrado won 2nd Place in the national XXXV Gran Premio de Arte Popular Vicentenario in the metalworking category and that same year he won Honorable Mention at the XVII Edicion del Concurso Nacional de Nacimientos (Nativities) Mexicanos 2010.
For Conrado Villegas craftsmanship in metals is not only a way of life - pride in creating unique designs from his unending inspiration.
Calle Antonio de León #16 Manzana 3
Fraccionamiento Montoya c.p 68140
951 517 4002 Celular: 951 146 2495