Sunday, November 9, 2008
With the Volcan de Paricutin as a backrop, the tiny village of Cocucho, Michoacan teeters atop a steep ascent from any of the three directions you approach it. After your long climb the town doesn't seem like much until you zero in on the massive earthenware pots that grace the doorways of many roughly hewn Cocucho homes. Behind these homes are simple workshops, with no potter's wheels or elaborate kilns. The stunning pots that emerge from these workshops can stand up to 1.5 meters in height are shaped entirely by the hand and are fired individually in a wood pyre that is heaped on top of it. Originally used to store corn, valuables, and (it is rumoured) the dead, many of these pots are collectors items fetching up to US$1500 when purchased outside the village.