Jaime Eduardo Vázquez Cortes, Tonalá, Jalisco
Jaime Eduardo Vázquez Cortés of Tonalá, Jalisco, is a multi-award winning burnished clay artist. From the age of 10, Jaime studied with his grandfather, Salvador Vazquez, one of Mexico's great maestros is featured in the book "Great Masters of Mexican Folk Art". He is already the fourth generation of artists to perform the burnished clay technique.
Jaime won First Place in the new category of youth artist for burnished clay in FONART 2014. He works together with his family in order to be more recognized for his unique style.
Where does he get his clay from? Near Tonalá there are deposits of white, black and red clay with different proportions of silica. He pays a fee to extract large portions of mud from this area. At home, the lumps of mud are broken, powdered and sifted to remove impurities. Water is then added and the clay begins to "ferment", covered with plastic and separated for several months. Some of Jaime's pieces will be made in molds, and some of them will be made completely by hand. They are polished with stones after being dried, a layer of pigment is applied to seal the pores of the clay, as well as to give it a background color. The paintings are made by stirring muds and adding pigments from the earth.
After the first layer has dried and the dyes are stirred, everything is ready to begin decoration (palmeado). With a variety of brushes, some of them animal hair, he begins, with great skill, to draw the designs for which he is so well known. The final stage can be the longest, as the colors must be well fixed to the vessel, so that they do not fade during the baking process.
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