The here and now... and what and why

Complacency is a trap. At least that’s what I was thinking when I up and left the comfort of a Yankee prep school gig, where I taught music, amongst other things, for 28 years. There was also that life long career as a composer, musician and artist.

First, it was a year in St. Thomas, USVI, working as a reporter and shooting photography and then, a year in San Agustin Etla, Oaxaca, Mexico.
Time passed.
More time passed and a year back in the Athens of America followed by a hasty return to Oaxaca where it is all happening.
A couple of years in San Sebastian Etla and now, just down the road in San Pablo Etla. Life is good.

Click on an image to see it larger.
For additional photography please visit my flickr page.
You can find my music on Jango (World & latin - Worldbeat) and at iTunes and most online stores.
¡Soy consciente de todas las tradiciones del Internet!
If you are coming to Oaxaca, please contact me for tours or advice.

Santo Domingo

Santo Domingo
The view from Corazon del Pueblo

The hereafter re me

My photo
Oaxaca, Oaxaca, Mexico
Musician, photographer, videographer, reporter, ex-officio teacher, now attempting to be a world traveler

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Return to Yanhuitlan

Yanhuitlan remains one of my favorite places to visit because, not only is it such a stunning setting, the church and monastery so massive, but the site is an encapsulation of so many aspects of Mexican history.  It is in the Mixteca region, about an hour's drive north of Oaxaca.

Long story short:  100,000 Mixtecs lived there when the Spanish showed up in in the early 1500's.  The Dominicans decided to build a church and to convert everyone to Catholicism.  They designed the village surrounding the church and built an aqueduct.  A good plan.  Unfortunately, they also brought diseases that effectively wiped out the population with fifty years with a 95 percent kill rate.  No need for a large church after that, but construction continued through the centuries and it survived various battles during the revolutions. The restoration has been ongoing for several years now as the government pushes the Ruta Domincana.

I remember the first time we went there when work on the interior of the church had barely begun.  There were birds living in the huge dust filled space.  It was dark and dirty and magical.  Now, it is bright and white and I think it has lost a little of its magic, because so much of the patina is gone and the floors and walls are too perfect.  However, the before, during and after shots are pretty dramatic.
 That little white rectangle is spixl, just to give you an idea of how big the place is.
 That's me in the flying buttress.
 The finished front facade.
 What a ceiling!  At least twenty five meters up there.
 Some of the lost patina.  One of the original doors.
First they cut the stone, in this case a channel for rain,  and then, somehow, got it all the way up to the roof..... without any machines.
 Beautiful moorish ceiling at the entrance.
 With scaffolding
 And without
I need to go back to get some shots I missed.... like I need a excuse to return to one of my favorite places.

No comments: