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Mundo Village was founded by Cristobal Mathias to work with artisans, primarily from developing countries and under-resourced communities, who produce beautiful, high quality, individually hand-crafted products. Their mission is to offer these products to a broader, more diverse marketplace, bringing culture, style and artistry to many individuals while increasing the economic well-being of the artists and their families.
Cristobal was first introduced to Nicaragua while there as a consultant working to promote and strengthen civil society organizations. He saw both the current plight of many Nicaraguans as well as the incredible potential for a brighter future. Cristobal also had the good fortune to discover the beautiful pottery hand-crafted in the village of San Juan de Oriente. There they laid at the local market in various creative shapes, colors and motifs. He bought his first set and loved them so much that he thought everyone would also wat to adorn their homes with them. Mundo Village was soon born.
Some of the world's most distinctive pottery is created in San Juan de Oriente, a small village nestled among volcanos, alongside a picturesque lagoon. It is still common to see ox carts carrying clay in burlap sacks from the fields and delivering it and other materials to the various workshops. The clay is "thrown" on a kick wheel to form the pot. The designs are then painted onto the pot using colored oxides. Once dry, the potter meticulously carves, sgraffito style, the outlines of the design using home made tools typically fashioned from the spokes of a bicycle wheel or spines of a broken umbrella that have been sharpened by a stone.
When the decorative incisions are complete, the pot is baked in a wood-burning kiln, constructed from adobe bricks in a traditional bee hive configuration. After the kiln has cooled the pots are removed and polished with a soft cloth. The final product is a truly beautiful work of art made all the more special by the many hours of labor and love from the hands of a gifted artisan.
Located in Prestigious Washington DC, USA
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