Sunday, December 5, 2010

Fabrica La Aurora in San Miguel....
















One of my favourite places to visit in Mexico is San Miguel de Allende, a beautiful colonial town with a strong reputation for art and culture. Fabrica La Aurora is a wonderful art and design centre boasting some 50 studios. It is a former textile factory open from 1902 - 1991 spinning thread from many regions of Mexico into fine spun cotton from which muslins and linens were made....



















The original structure of the factory has been retained giving a strong impression of what it was like in the past when it was San Miguel's largest employer with over 300 workers. Social and cultural life centred on the factory with Sunday picnics in the grounds listening to the factory band watching the sponsored baseball team play. La Aurora also hosted Guadalupe Day with a parade of the Virgin through the factory to the especially established altar, plus the factory's cannon was fired to celebrate the patron Saint Michael's Day in September...


















The factory was finally forced to close its doors after 99 years on March 11th 1991 when the final whistle was blown for the very last time. This was due to the effects of new Free Trade Agreements which flooded the country with cheaper imports. Today much of the old machinery (originally from England and later Germany/Switzerland) and artefacts have been restored and integrated with the new artworks on display, showing a great tribute and sensitivity to the history and heritage of this beautiful building......



















The art work on display varies from traditional to contemporary including paintings, sculptures, collages, home design, furniture, glassware, and jewellery....



















And you can step inside around 50 studios and observe the artists at work....



















Since I last visited, both a restaurant and cafe have been added, plus the grounds now include beautiful landscaped cacti gardens.....





All in all it is a lovely afternoon out, and easy to reach from the centre of San Miguel by walking down Calle Hidalgo for about ten minutes....











Two of my favourite Mexican artists who have working studios here are Ezcurdia (responsible for the large fish) and Ricardo Garcia (above) whose work includes the wonderful imagery of the traditional Mexican loteria (lottery). For more windows on the world this week, check out My World Tuesday by clicking here

11 comments:

Sylvia K said...

Well, of course, you know you've made my day with a post about San Miguel de Allende!! Such lovely memories your photos brought back! It was such a great 13 months in my life! Hope you have a great week, Catherine!

Sylvia

Photo Cache said...

I always enjoy coming here to peek at what you posted. Even on non My World days I peek.

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

Wow, that is a really interesting place. I'm a good solid free market republican but I wonder about all the chaos in people's lives caused by free trade policies. Is it worth it?

Luna Miranda said...

marvelous artworks and architecture! very interesting place. thanks for sharing.

Y. Ikeda said...

Thanks for commenting on my entry.
This place has a lot to offer. If I have a chance, I would definitely visit. Thanks for sharing!

...louciao... said...

You are the best tour guide, always leading us to fascinating places with so much to see!

Nattsyrran said...

Thanks for sharing lovely images!!

Fly Girl said...

50 artist studios! This sounds like the kind of place I could get lost in for days. I especially love the loteria piece as well, we also have an exhibit up dedicated to the game and I love the characters.

wanderlust said...

Wow, amazing. Beautiful, great post!

Catherine said...

hey glad you all like the look of this place - great for a visit

rebecca said...

ahhhh san miguel..one of my favorite of charming places in the world.

did you try the sangria in the outdoor restaurant across from the Hilo Negro?
best in all of san miguel.
you have my word.

so glad to find you and our mutual love affair.