Indigenous artisans in Nacajuca, Tabasco, have created a special Christmas tree decorated with 500 sombreros and other artisanal products.
As well as the sombreros, the 10-meter tree is adorned with 100 bags, traditional fans and drums, all of which were made by artisans from nearby Mayan towns.
One of the artisans, Miguel Sánchez, said he came up with the idea a long time ago, but struggled to secure the support of local authorities. In the end, the efforts of local artisans made the project a reality.
“A total of 500 sombreros of three different sizes and types were used, 300 of them were large. In addition, bags, matted palm leaves, drums, old man masks for the traditional dance and baskets were needed, all made with materials from the region, produced by the Yokot’an peoples of the state of Tabasco,” he said.
He added that the project helped some artisans earn income amid the hardships of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The artisans were invited. Obviously they were paid for their labor as they should be. With the pandemic they didn’t have any sales, so [the project] helped.”
The unique community centerpiece went down well with local people, Sánchez added. “It motivates people. Everyone was delighted because it is what they like: something representative of the municipality. Nacajuca is a town that has a lot of culture. Of all the municipalities of Tabasco, it is the one that has the most culture and tradition …” he said, adding that he hoped the group would be hired for projects in the future, whether locally or in other states.
It’s not only Nacajuca that is showcasing the work of its artisans this holiday season. In the state capital, Villahermosa, 21 Nativity sets made of different sizes and materials have been put on display.
With reports from El Universal