This photo (danza de los viejitos) and the five that follow are the work of Ulises y Moravia, Patzcuaro. Here is the write up I used on their webpage:
Moravia Miranda Rios and Ulises Garcia Zuñiga met at the "Escuela Nacional de Artes Plasticas - Academia de San Carlos" one of the most prestigious art schools in Latin America. It was love at first sight, and they have been together ever since.
They majored in painting and have been in the art business for fifteen years. The couple is well known across Mexico. They are often hired to decorate the walls of impressive "haciendas" (estates).
Eight years ago, looking for a better place to raise their little daughter Yunuen, they left Mexico City and moved to Patzcuaro, Michoacan. When they were not traveling, their experimentation with gourds which are plentiful in the state of Michoacan, turned into more than just curiosity. Well-versed in different media and art techniques, the couple added some interesting artistic elements that set their gourd art apart. Wonderful gourd art abounds in the world, but what Moravia and Ulises make is truly unique. The couple recreates Mexican stories and famous characters in their gourds.
Why gourds? Because a gourd is a very noble and versatile surface that allows for a diversity of art expressions. It is ecological, therefore no deforestation comes into the equation, and gourds of all sizes and shapes are available in the state of Michoacan where they reside.
Moravia Miranda and Ulises Garcia are not attracted to exhibitions, (most of the times they decline) believing that the only proof they need to feel successful, is to be successful. However, we still want to mention some of their appearances.
1999 Las Manos de Mexico - Madrid, Spain
2001 Proyecto De Facto - México City
2003 Feria Artesanal Iberoamericana - Munich, Francfort, Paris, Florence
A funny anecdote:
Once Moravia and Ulises received a rather peculiar request from a restaurant in Morelia. They were asked to make a St. Anthony from an elongated gourd. They found out that this particular gourd would be part of a St. Anthony collection, and that it would be displayed in one of the corners of the restaurant, which is fondly known as "the spinsters' corner".
In the Mexican Catholic faith, it is believed that if a woman is facing spinsterhood, the remedy is to turn St. Anthony upside down for a week and devotedly say a special prayer every night to St. Anthony.
The piece Moravia and Ulises created was unique and immediately stood out in the restaurant's St. Anthony collection. Later, they learned that the gourd was available for rent, and ladies of all ages were renting their Saint Anthony gourd and taking it home for a week in the hope of getting a husband.