Mexican papier-mâché, called cartoneria or carton piedra, appeared in the 17th century, when churches were erected all over Mexico and church-goers began to make crafts with which to decorate them. Traditionally, either the bark of a fig tree, called amate, or fibers from the maguey plants are used to make the paper. Pedro Linares invigorated the style of cartoneria by reinventing old forms and styles with alibrijes, fantastical imaginary creatures born from his feverish dreams. His work earned the attention of academics, which carved a new market for collectors.
The now internationally renowned Linares family, whose pieces we carry, continues to produce such works today in Mexico city.
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