Patricia Castillo

Patricia was born in Izúcar de Matamoros, Puebla, México. Izúcar is located in a region that has been a pottery center for many centuries. Her brothers and sisters all follow the path forged by their mother Doña Soledad Martha Hernandez de Castillo and their father Don Alfonso Castillo Orta. More information about the family's history can be found at the following Wikipedia article:

By the age of eight, Patricia began to play with clay, making small figures. There was not a moment that she can remember not thinking about a new design or a new piece to create.

She has spent her life working with her family and individually to continue the traditions and legacy of her heritage. Today she creates works that are in the traditional form of the “Arbol de la Vida” and Mexican Folk Art as well as more contemporary works that remain rooted in antiquity.

“I have been working in the craft almost my entire life. My family and I have made hundreds of pieces over the years. Every single piece is handmade and unique. I am currently working out of my Texas home with my husband where we relocated seven years ago, shortly before I became a U.S. citizen. I have to say that my heart is divided between Izúcar where my roots are and Texas where my home is. I love them both and they are both my inspiration. Tradition and artistic legacy are keys to the continuation of folk art and tradition. So I attempt to represent the hundreds of years of experience as I understand them and taught to me by my family and my family's family.

Our work is steeped in tradition in a place in the world where whole families still work together to bring income into the family, where family members work simply, with their hands, together, for a lifetime. The work includes utilitarian, ceremonial, decorative and historic objects that are vessels for local history, tradition and design mixed with modern and new techniques. It is not a static thing and is ever changing as new ideas, materials and processes find their ways into the work, and old methods are rediscovered. Tradition and artistic legacy is a key to the continuation of folk art and tradition is a very important component in our artworks.

Our pieces are handmade of low fired terra cotta clay, with wire attachments. We paint all of our pieces first with a coat of white primer that we antique with a proprietary process. Each piece is intricately painted with designs, some of them inspired by traditional designs found in pyramids across the Americas, and some of the designs are contemporary inventions inspired by nature and the world around us.”


Participated in a family exhibition”Centro Nigromante” San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, México 1990 & 1991

Solo Exhibition Gallery "Tzintzuntzan" Berkeley, California 1991

Created works for the family exhibition for Feria de la Cerámica popular (Popular Ceramics Fair) Ayuntamiento de Zamora, Zamora, Spain 1992

Solo Exhibition "Tecnica de dos Mundos" (Technique of two worlds) Museum Nacional de Artes e Industrias Populares, Puebla, México 1992

Demonstrated family art tradition for Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead); “Bazar del Mundo” San Diego, California 1998

Produced work for family presentation; “Surcando la Cultura” (Cultivating Culture); Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum Chicago. Illinois 1998

Fair of Ceramics, Puebla, Mexico 2001 & 2002

"Exhibition of Our Lady of the Guadalupe" La Casa de la Cultura- Cultural Arts Center, Del Rio, TX 2003

Homage to Alfonso Castillo and Family, Centro Cultural Nigromante, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato. Mexico 2005

Solo Exhibition Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) "Corazón Del Pueblo" Gallery, Oaxaca, Mexico 2005

"Dia de Los Muertos" (Day of the Dead) Gallery Indigo, Oaxaca, Mexico 2005

"Memorial Del Barro: Hecho Luz (Commemoration of the Clay: Made Light. Homage to Alfonso Castillo and Family, Izúcar de Matamoros, Puebla, México 2005

Exhibition Mixed Messages, Torpedo Factory Art Center, Alexandria VA December 2006

Ofrenda Cultural Exhibition and Art Demonstration; “The Phoenix” Washington, DC 2007

Private exhibition; “Politics and Prose” Washington, DC 2007

Instructed 250 2nd grade students about the expression of culture and imagination through sculpture and paint; Cougar Elementary, Manassas, VA 2007

"Annual Peace Market" Esperanza and Justice Center, San Antonio, TX 2003, 2010, 2011, 2016 & 2017

Art Exhibit of local & international Art on the State of the Native seed of Corn, San Antonio TX 2011

Family Exhibition "rebirth from the depths of my being". San Antonio TX 2011

Exhibition Altar and Demonstration for Day of the Dead, Art Museum of South Texas, Corpus Christi TX, October 2013

Exhibition at the Bulverde Area Art Center Bulverde, TX April 2017

Annual Craft Show at the Bulverde Area Art Center Bulverde, TX November 2016 & 2017.

Annual Art event “Fall Into Art” Gruene, TX October 2016 & 2017.

Annual Art Event “Dia De Los Muertos” New Braunfels, TX October 2016.

Annual Art Fair “Holiday Fair” San Antonio Museum of Art, San Antonio, TX 2016 & 2017.

Annual Art Event “Latin American Art Festival” San Diego. CA April 2017.

Annual Art Event “Fiesta Latina” Silver City, NM June 2017.

Annual Art Event “Clay Festival” Silver City, NM July 2017.


Family Awards:

First Place in December Competition of Popular Traditions, Mexico City 1985

First Place "Marine Life" Puebla, Mexico 1992

"First Place in the Great prize of Popular Art" Mexico, city 1992 & 1994

National Competition of Artisans “The hands of Mexico, Form, Color, and Texture: Language of the artist" First place 1993 & second place 1994

Special Mention for the Masterpiece "Traditional Candelabra" Habana, Cuba 1995

Award of the National Popular arts and Traditions, Mexico City 1996

Award of the National Science & Arts 1996

First Place in National Competition of the Nativity. Mexico City 1998

"Gran Premio de Arte Popular" (The Great Reward in Popular Art) Fomento Nacional Artesanal (Fonart) Mexico, City 2005

Private Collections:

Tree of life “Vida y Muerte”, Permanent collection the Kunsthaus, Munich, Germany

Tree of life “Trajes Tipicos & Ofrendas”, London Museum

Tree of life”Arbol de la Vida” & “China Poblana” Vienna, Austria

Tree of Life “Trajes Tipicos” residence of the king Juan Carlos, Spain


Premio Nacional de Ciencias y Artes 1996, Secretaría de Educación Pública y el Consejo Nacional Para la Cultura y las Artes, 1997

Grandes Maestros Del Arte Popular Mexicano, Fomento Cultural Banamex, Mexico 1998

El Arte de la Familia Castillo, by Juan Macouzet 2005