Hilario Alejos Madrigal,
San José de Gracia, Michoacán
Hilario Alejos Madrigal and his family live in San José de Gracia, Michoacán. He is one of the masters of this traditional type of ceramic folk art — piñas or pineapple pots. These wonderful pieces of unusual pottery attract many collectors.
Hilario learned to work with clay at the age of 15, from his famous mother, Elisa Madrigal Martínez.
The production of these ornamental piñas, punch bowls, candlesticks, etc., requires very meticulous skill and talent. He gets his clay from a nearby deposit. First, the clay is placed in sacks and brought to town on donkeys or mules (maybe in a pick-up these days), where the material is cleaned, ground, and sifted. Water is added until the right consistency is achieved. It is let set for a time, before being shaped into the famous piñas.
Each piece is then modeled, decorative elements are added, and the process of drying in the sun begins. Once dry, there is a first burn in a wood kiln, then it is glazed and finished with an additional baking at 900oC.
Hilario has won many awards and his work adorns the cover of the landmark book "The Great Masters of Mexican Popular Art".
Morelos #60 esq. Lazaro Cardinal
San Jose de Gracia, Michoacan MPIO de Tangancicuaro 59775
355 511 2198 WhatsApp