Folk Treasures of Mexico


by Marion Oettinger, Jr.
Plate photographs by Lee Boltin & John Dyer

ISBN: 978-1-55885-595-3
Publication Date: March 31, 2010
Bind: Clothbound
Pages: 233

More than 150 striking photos focus on the country’s finest collection of Mexican folk art.

Look Inside




In his foreword, former New York governor and vice president of the United States Nelson A. Rockefeller remembers his first trip to Mexico in 1933 and his subsequent, life-long fascination with the Mexican people and their popular art.

Rockefeller’s collection of more than 3,000 pieces of Mexican folk art is widely considered to be the most exceptional in the U.S., and Folk Treasures of Mexico celebrates these icons—created from the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries—with more than 150 photos of the pieces, many of which are quite rare.

This updated edition of the long out-of-print book focusing on this stunning collection of Mexican folk art contains a new foreword by Rockefeller’s daughter, Ann Rockefeller Roberts, and a new prologue by Marion Oettinger, Jr., the director of the San Antonio Museum of Art, who wrote the principal text about the collection.

Oettinger describes the objects according to function: utilitarian, ceremonial, decorative, or for play. Among the many noteworthy objects are a wooden-carved centurion helmet mask from the eighteenth century depicting a Roman guard, which is one of the few remaining masks of this type in existence, and a nineteenth century ceramic pitcher from Oaxaca that combines many stylistic techniques. Other objects include a variety of children’s toys, clothing, and items for eating and drinking.

First published in 1990, the book also contains the original preface by Rockefeller’s daughter, who was instrumental in finding permanent homes for her father’s collection, which can now be found in the San Antonio Museum of Art and the MexicanMuseum in San Francisco.

Including a glossary, bibliography, and chronology, Folk Treasures of Mexico is a must-read for anyone interested in Latin American art, culture, and history.

Click here to listen to an interview with Marion Oettinger, Jr. about Folk Treasures of Mexico: The Nelson A. Rockefeller Collection.