(951) 285-2664


QR Code


Apr 01 2022



Alebrijes: Mystical Art, History, Culture and Practice in Tilcajete

Come hang with us and paint a beautiful alebrije!

Oaxacan alebrijes are surreal dream-like wooden sculptures composed of elements of different animals and/or mythical creatures and painted with brilliant colors and patterns that require dedication, patience, and a keen attention to detail. As you’ve probably seen on the streets, the Oaxacan alebrije tends to take form in more organic, recognizable animal figures carved and painted in a similar fashion.

Alex, Criselda and their mom Benita, all members of a renowned family of alebrije painters, invite you to join them and Tlayudona to embark on the adventure of immersing yourself in colors and patterns as you learn to paint your own alebrije.  All hosts are proud members of Tilcajete, a local village where Oaxacan alebrijes originate, and they will share their town´s history and relationship with this colorful craft.  They will explain the historical meaning behind different color selections and the series of zapotec-originated designs used to decorate alebrijes. (Beginners, have no fear–the earliest alebrijes were painted with a series of lines and dots, and Criselda is also ready to demonstrate a “how to” for the less artistically-inclined!)

This is an introductory course and no prior experience or skill level is required. It will be offered bilingually in Spanish with English translation. It takes place in the village of Tilcajete.

This course includes:

  • Your own 3-5 inch hand-carved alebrije (There will be various models to choose from)
  • Your choice of 6-8 acrylic colors
  • Brushes, palettes, aprons, and other necessary art supplies lent by Tlayudona
  • A pictoral and spoken overview of the history of alebrijes in Oaxaca and group instruction regarding painting techniques
  • One-on-one help with your detailing technique
  • Transportation to and from Tilcajete following our Covid Protocol

Children are welcome to participate in this course, but the rate remains the same since their participation requires the same material cost.

This class has a maximum number of 10 participants and tends to fill up, so reserve your spots with anticipation.

Leave a Comment