Marcelo Vidales Fuentes, San Martin Tilcajete, Oaxaca

Marcelo Vidales Fuentes, San Martin Tilcajete, Oaxaca

Marcelo Vidales Fuentes is from San Martin Tilcajete, Oaxaca, well known for its alebrije woodcarvers. Alebrijes are creatures that spring from the mind of the artist - they can be mythical creatures, animals, people - but are always surprisingly intricate, colorful and unique.

Thirteen years ago, Marcelo came up with the idea to make alebrije toys - a unique addition to the variation of themes other woodcarvers have pursued. He observed there was no children's market within the broad spectrum of alebrijes and decided this would be his field of endeavor. He has dedicated fulltime to his work for the last four and a half years.

First, Marcelo decides on a design with his grandfather, known as Miguel G., who carved donkey carts and bulls. The figures are carved from copal or pine wood.

Even though his original idea was to make toys for children, adults love them as well - they bring us back into our childhoods. Marcelo has become very well known for his work. He works for the love of what he does and enjoys watching people smile as they pursue his creative toys. His wish for all children is that they have happy memories they can revive and preserve in a beautiful box where they can be recalled at will.

Marcelo lives with his wife, Socorro Roque Luis and his12 year old daughter, Aranza. He participated in his first Concurso (judged art show) for folk art in 2011 conducted by the Institute of Oaxacan Handicrafts - he won second place. The piece was a Ferris wheel.

Av. Hidalgo #30

San Martin Tilcajete, Oaxaca

951 189 0431 or 951 507 7434 (cellphones)