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Ceramics of Mata Ortiz

Ceramic Vase


Mata Ortíz, land of potters and miracles

Mata Ortíz rose to fame thanks to the miracle of a meeting between two extraordinary human beings: Juan Quezada Celado and Spencer MacCallum. The first, a simple country man, the second a professor of Anthropology. Juan Quezada rediscovered in a self-taught way the ancestral technique of making ceramics with the technique of the ancients. Spencer discovered in the budding potter a friend, a generous, brilliant and humble artist.

Placeswhat to visit


Zona Aqueológica

Region Map

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Some of History

It all started when Spencer found a small clay pot at a thrift store in New Mexico. Mr. MacCallum thought it was ancient art because of the technique seen in the making of the pot. He asked about the origin of the piece and was informed that it was made by a “boy” in Mexico. Spencer wanted to meet the author and ventured out to literally look for a needle in a haystack. The professor found the “boy” and the rest is history.


Cooking a pot

As in all the towns in the rural area of Chihuahua, the kitchen is the meeting point for families, the beans are cooked slowly in a clay pot, green or red chili sauces are prepared to season the potatoes, meat, stew and flour or corn tortillas.


Heritage cultural

Without a doubt, the cultural heritage of Mata Ortiz is the craft elevated to the art of pottery. Juan Quezada Celado rediscovered the ancestral technique of the trade that had been lost in the region over the centuries. In the ancient city of Paquimé there were notable potters, some zoomorphic pieces were found and others were used as funerary urns.

Mata Ortíz Ceramics

Mata MunicipalityOrtiz

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