The walls of San Marcos la Laguna are alive with color and artwork from local and visiting artists. Many of these murals tell stories and communicate messages and one of the most significant murals and messages you will come across is by local artist Miguel.
Found on a wall close to the dock the mural depicts a scene of several characters including a lady who you will usually find sitting across from the mural with her basket of bananas.
We asked Miguel to share with us a little more about the painting and the message it communicates.
(From right to left)
“The Mayan figure is the scribe and his words of wisdom are written in Tz’utuijil, the Mayan language spoken in several towns around the lake. He is saying ‘Ta wak’axaj ja pixab’ k’ixin aatit mamma’… ‘Listen to the advice of the ancestors’ to the grandmother next to him.
“The grandmother represents the present and the commitment to listen to the council of the ancestors, preserving Mayan culture which roots itself in the care of the natural world. This is depicted in her caring for the lake in her arms. The traditional tocoyal she wears on her head extends across the other characters in the mural, carrying the wisdom and information to other generations.
“I have used an urban stencil technique to paint the children in the mural. This is how I distinguish myself from many other muralists and graffiti artists by mixing ancestral concepts with modern techniques. The children are holding plants in their hands as a symbol of their commitment to be educated in their culture and conserve the future of their community.
“The final figure in this scene is of a Mayan fisherman, his ore steering the path and way to conserving this culture.
“The idea for this mural came when I was reading the Chilam Balam, a series of Mayan books kept to preserve tradition and culture. The book talks of our culture ending when religion is bought to our land, but that many of the ‘corn blood’ will come back to manifest in the world and keep the Mayan culture alive. We need to adapt to conserve the Earth, as before we did not use plastics or chemicals that contaminate it. I feel very connected to my ancestors, as if I am now a reincarnate of one of those ‘corn blood’, who constructed the great pyramids in Tikal many centuries ago. My art is my way to communicate ancestral knowledge to the eyes that see it today”.
Join us to support Miguel’s next mural
Circles Café & Hostel is hosting an art circle on Sunday 22 November 2015 to help Miguel raise money for the materials he needs for his next mural in his home town of San Pablo.
Come along to see Miguel drawing, take an art workshop, create your own masterpiece and buy art.