Marco Antonio Juárez Cruz. Tapijulapa, Tabasco
The Pueblo Magico town of Tapijulapa is in the Sierras de Tabasco and has a unique art form that can only be found practiced here. This is the root of the mutusay, a natural fiber similar to wicker , with which the skill of the artisan can weave chairs, tables, furniture of all types
Mutusay weaving was only started 40 years ago by Benito Veloz, a primary school teacher, who without tools, began to work with the branches that hung from the trees — mutusay. Today, mutusay has become the most important economic livelihood of Tapijulapa, the only place where this raw
material is used.
The mutusay is gathered by the ejidatario (ejido land) peasants who cut it especially for the artisans during times when they do not have to work harvesting their land. They sell a roll of mutusay for five pesos — to weave a rocking chair, around 100 rolls are needed.
There are approximately 15 workshops with which the almost three thousand inhabitants of the town directly or indirectly have a relationship. Two generations ago, the family of Marco Antonio Juárez Cruz began working with mutusay. Today, he works with two other persons to create their remarkable furniture.
Mutusay is cool, easy to repair and it is ideal for hot climates as it can withstand high temperatures, as well as rain. However, promotion is needed for the furniture of Tapijulapa to become known. Social media has been their main avenue of promoting this work. Some opportunities have presented themselves, but were not to the benefit of the artisans.
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