Meaningful Mexico A Journey Like No Other!
PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP

PHOTOGRAPHY

Title: THE MAGIC OF SAN MIGUEL THROUGH A LENS

Instructor: GUSTAVO FERNANDEZ CORIA

Get to know San Miguel while taking photographs of some of the most iconic monuments and hidden gems of San Miguel. This workshop takes advantage of the architecture, natural landscape, colors, light, and beauty of San Miguel de Allende. Workshop focuses on composition, lighting, and a variety of techniques to render artistic photography. Gustavo will train your eye to see differently and find beauty in the most unexpected places. He will take you to the most important plazas, churches, squares, and historic and architectural buildings in San Miguel, as well as small and charming alleyways, hidden corners with breath-taking views, botanical gardens, mountains and ravines. By the end of the workshop, you will be able to capture the magic of San Miguel on camera.

Requirements: Digital or analog camera and good walking shoes

Levels: Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced

Material: Colorful San Miguel de Allende

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COOKING WORKSHOP

COOKING

Title: COOKING WITH GUSTO

Instructor: DINA BUTTERFIELD

Learn about Mexico's culture and how it influenced its magnificent cuisine from one of the most distinguished chefs in San Miguel. The goal of this workshop is to make accessible the preparation of Mexico's rich and diverse cuisine by providing a hands-on experience. The workshop begins with a visit to the "Mercado" (market) with Chef Dina where you will learn about the ingredients such as the Spanish names of fruits, vegetables, and other foods in your recipes and most importantly how to carefully select them. Afterwards you will cook a 3-course meal that includes an appetizer, a soup or salad, an entrée and a side dish, and a dessert. The class ends with a lunch where you and your classmates savor everything you have cooked while enjoying a festive gathering. Recipes, lunch, and wine are included. Unlike other cooking classes, this workshop is spontaneous and personalized so if there is a dish you always wanted to cook, here is your opportunity to learn how to prepare it!

Requirements: A gusto for cooking

Levels: Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced

Material: Ingredients provided

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SCULPTURE WORKSHOP

ICHIBOKU ZUKURI & YOSEGI ZUKURI SCULPTURE

Title: ONE BLOCK SCULPTURING & ASSEMBLAGE OF PIECES

Instructor: MIGUEL ANGEL FERNANDEZ GONZALEZ

The objective of this workshop is to become acquainted with the Japanese sculpting techniques of Ichiboku Zukuri & Yosegi Zukuri, and its history, philosophy, and relation with the creative process. This workshop takes place in an ecological ranch that was converted to a sculpture park. In this bucolic setting you will create a sculpture and learn to resolve the conceptual and technical challenges of its elaboration. During the creative process, you will be exposed to a meditative experience as you explore a unique dialogue with your earthy materials and discover their strength, vulnerability, grace, and beauty.

You will have the option of either taking home your sculpture or donating it to the sculpture park collection where you will be working.

Requirements: Curiosity for raw materials and sculpting & a basic knowledge of sculpturing tools.

Levels: Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced

Material: Will be provided

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PAINTED GLASS

PAINTED GLASS

Title: Making Glass Your Canvas

Instructor: SUSANA ALONSO

Painted glass is an age-old art that has benefited from modern technology and materials. This course explores two different painting medias: the use of oxides and the use of powdered glass. When using oxides, students learn to apply the different colored oxides to create paintings that are formed by fusing the design between two sheets of glass in a kiln. The powdered glass technique uses glass powder of various colors to create a work on a sheet of glass. The piece is completed when the powdered glass is fused to the glass in the kiln.

Students will learn, how to design in a media that changes shape when made permanent. Use of color and types of glass will also be taught. Personalized attention will be given to each student. In addition to the workshops, individual work sessions are scheduled in the evenings with hands-on guidance.

Requirements: None

Levels: Beginning –Advanced (No experience working with glass required)

Material: Will be provided

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JEWELRY & METALSMITHING WORKSHOP

JEWELRY & METALSMITHING

Title: OBJECTS OF BEAUTY DESIGNED & MADE BY YOU

Instructor: JESSE BERT

This workshop covers topics such as piercing, filing, fabrication, surface texture, forming sheetmetal and joining non-traditional materials with types of cold connections such as rivets and tabs. Those without experience will be introduced to the most common jewelry and metalsmithing tools and techniques. Experienced students will be exposed to innovative and creative techniques that can be incorporated with traditional techniques. Since workshops are small and limited to 6 participants you are able to receive personalized attention and develop a unique way of working with metal and jewelry.

Requirements: Interest in jewelry making and exploration of materials

Levels: All

Material: All the basic materials for this class will be provided. Participants are also welcome to bring their own materials to the workshop such as their own pieces of jewelry, recycled objects or materials including those that could benefit your creative energies or ideas such as: bits of rusty metal, old cans, old maps, bone, pieces from old board games, pieces of broken glass, ceramic, plastic or wood, beads, wire, string, nuts, bolts, shell, plexiglass, pieces of hard wood (either new or used), rubber, old plaques with writing on them like from musical instruments or machinery, screen, buttons, etc.

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ART EXPRESSION WITH REED WORKSHOP

ART EXPRESSION WITH REED

Title: EXPRESS IT WITH REED

Instructor: MIGUEL ANGEL FERNANDEZ GONZALEZ

The purpose of this workshop is to explore the wonderful world of reed and learn how to use it to create a utilitarian object or a work of art. In this workshop you will learn about the versatility of this natural material and how it can be used to make a complex structure such as a roof or beautiful objects such as a basket or place mats. This workshop will take place outdoors in a bucolic setting where you will be surrounded by reed to inspire your imagination and ignite your creativity. Miguel Angel will teach you different techniques to enhance your ability to work with reed and be better able to freely experiment with it. Miguel Angel will also guide you through the process of designing and creating your own work of art.

Requirements: Manual skills, curiosity and an interest in nature

Levels: Beginning, Intermediate and Advanced

Material: Will be provided

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SPANISH CONVERSATION WORKSHOP

SPANISH GRAMMAR & CONVERSATION

Title: ESPAÑOL ANYONE

Instructor: MIGUEL ANGEL FERNANDEZ GONZALEZ

This workshop is designed for people who already have a solid grammatical base in Spanish and would like to polish their speaking and writing skills. This workshop offers you an opportunity to augment your vocabulary, review and use complex grammatical structures, improve your pronunciation and through lively and engaging conversations learn extensively about Mexican culture. Workshops usually take place in a charming setting such as a café, museum, or a plaza. Since Miguel Angel is an artist and philosopher from Mexico City who has lived in San Miguel many years, he’s passionate about this region and has a wide range of topics to discuss. He’ll initiate the workshop with a thought provoking topic and let you do most of the talking.

Requirements: 2 years of college in Spanish or equivalent

Levels: Intermediate, and Advanced

Material: Will be provided

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MOSAIC

MOSAIC

Title: THE ART OF MOSAIC

Instructor: SUSANA ALONSO

The art of mosaic is as old as civilization itself and as contemporary as today. It’s an ancient technique that creates designs and images using individual pieces of stone and ceramic in a variety of colors and sizes. Centuries-old mosaics from Greece and Egypt are just as impressive as the contemporary designs in Diego Rivera’s Olympic Stadium mural in Mexico City, Parc Güell in Barcelona, and the NYC subways.

In this course students will learn to make a 40 cm by 40 cm glass-mosaic of their own design. Students will become familiar with the variety of tools involved. They will learn to create a mosaic design, select the glass, learn how to cut it and prepare the pieces for final assembly. Personalized attention is given to each student. In addition to the workshops, individual work sessions are scheduled in the evenings with hands-on guidance.

Requirements: None

Levels: Beginning –Advanced (No experience working with mosaics required)

Material: Will be provided

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MEXICAN FOLK ART WORKSHOP

MEXICAN FOLK ART

Title: SHRINE ASSEMBLAGE

Instructor: ANADO MCLAUCHLIN

In a playful atmosphere, Anado facilitates and encourages participants in their own creative journey. In this workshop you will learn to construct your own altar or personal shrine by using collage assemblage. Under the guidance of Anado, you will create your own artistic piece by using your imagination and a wide range of common and unexpected materials. This workshop is designed to be a playful, creative and meditative exploration honoring your intuition and visionary spirit.

Requirements: None

Levels: Beginning, Intermediate, and Advancede

Material: Will be provided but you are encouraged to bring your own

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ART HISTORY LECTURES

ART HISTORY LECTURES

Title: COLOR YOUR LIFE

Instructor: BEA AARONSON & STEPHEN EAKER

Be mystified, dazzled, and transformed by the lectures of two of San Miguel’s most respected and beloved artists. They will share with you their curiosity, knowledge, and passion for art history, philosophy, and literature. Their lectures are like story telling performances with impersonations and theatrical renderings of artists and authors’ thoughts. At the end of their “lectures” they engage in discussions with their audience, which widens the dialogue about the creative process. Their lectures in Art History include the lives and works of Van Gogh, Toulouse Lautrec, Picasso, Modigliani, Matisse, Braque, Kandsinsky, Chagall, Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, and Rufino Tamayo. In Literature they include Baudelaire, Balzac, Zola, Marcel Proust, and in Philosophy they render an introduction to Jewish Kabbalah and the Midrashic interpretation; cultural and religious insights into the power of Love and Compassion and the world-wide Symbolism of Midsummer festivals.

Their personalized method in which they tell their story brings forth another dimension of perception and understanding. Their words are in motion and you can see, feel, and experience the atmosphere of each epoch they discuss. Everybody in San Miguel loves them. Bea and Stephen have transformed their house into a mini cultural center or a salon where ideas germinate, knowledge is shared, and better understanding is bestowed.

Requirements: A love for learning and an open mind

Levels: Beginning, Intermediate, and Advancede

Material: Will be provided

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Stained Glass

Stained Glass

Title: Creating Beauty with Stained Glass

Instructor: SUSANA ALONSO

Stained glass technique developed several centuries ago, is what has allowed the creation of the awe-inspiring stained glass windows in the cathedrals of Europe. It is a time-consuming and demanding technique, requiring the precise cutting and assembly of individual glass pieces using lead strips and soldering at every joint. Finished leaded-glass pieces are strong and resilient. The reward is glass art of amazing beauty and permanence.

In this course, the students will make a leaded-glass design piece of approximately 40 cm X 40 cm. Students will learn about the tools and then how to employ them to cut glass, using a methodology that has changed little in hundreds of years.

Leaded glass art requires designs that accommodates to this rigorous technique. Students will learn basic design principles and how to select glass for their design. Personalized attention will be given to each student. In addition to the workshops, individual work sessions are scheduled in the evenings with hands-on guidance.

Requirements: None

Levels: Beginning –Advanced (No experience working with glass required)

Material: Will be provided

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HISTORIC & ARCHITECTURAL WALKING LECTURE

HISTORIC & ARCHITECTURAL WALKING LECTURE

Title: SAN MIGUEL BEHIND THE FACADE

Instructor: ARTURO MORALES

There are several levels of depth to every city and San Miguel is no exception. You may walk its streets and be marveled by its beauty and charm yet only scrape its surface. This walking lecture will bestow you with a deeper and enriching understanding of San Miguel. As you walk through downtown, Arturo will provide a wealth of information about the history, architecture, religion, and culture of this enchanting city. You will learn much more about Mexico with this walking lecture than in an entire course as Arturo will immerse you in the pre-Hispanic, Colonial, and "Porfiriato" epochs which were fundamental in the design and construction of San Miguel. After this lecture you will have an understanding of why streets have their specific names, why one street has five fountains and other streets have none, why some streets are wider and others narrow; why the cobble stones have a distinct design and where they come from, why there are three churches next to each and what the reliefs in their facades symbolize. You will see and feel San Miguel differently and have a deeper appreciation for it.

Requirements: None

Levels: All levels

Material: Streets of downtown San Miguel

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