Day Trips from Xcalak – Casa de los Venados
A very cool private Mexican Folk Art Collection in the colonial city of Valladolid. There are over 3,000 pieces in an 18,000 sq. ft. private home. This huge private home took 10 years to renovate and is located right off the main zocalo, or central square. They will do tours starting at 10 am They take about an hour. If you are in striking distance of Valladolid, this is a must see. Cost is $100 peso ($6USD) donation per person.
We arrived just before 10 am when the first tour starts. The home owners weren’t there but apparently, they will greet visitors if they are around. The first thing you notice is a huge mural in the main entry. It was apparently completed off-site then assembled on the wall. The collection comes from all over Mexico. Other items you will notice are the multiple Catrina sculptures and paintings, Otomi embroidery from Hidalgo, large murals, Talavera ceramics from Puebla, and pineapple pottery from Michoacan.
A quick aside on the Catrina images. They did explain on the tour that the Catrina imagery is meant to make the dead less scary. The idea is that the dead are all around us and they aren’t to be feared. Thus the images are usually smiling or laughing. The Dia de los Muertos or Day of the Dead in Mexico is a mash up of indigenous religions and the Catholicism that the Spanish brought with them. and has nothing to do with our Halloween.
Casa de los Venados is not a hotel, however they do have 4 guest suites that are stunning. Each suite has a different theme with different art pieces in each. Check out the Frida Kahlo suite, that is an homage to the Mexican artist.
P.S. I apologize for the haziness of the photos, I must have had a smudge on the lens.