Mexico Travel Guide
Talavera Art

Talavera: simply a work of art

Rutopía editorial team
Rutopía editorial team
- min read

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Today is a visit to the beautiful state of Puebla, which is located in the center of Mexico. Although it has no beach, it has nine magical towns. Thanks to its gastronomy, we can enjoy the chiles en nogada throughout September, especially on Independence Day. Besides being recognized for its food, Puebla also stands out for the production of its Talavera. The Talavera of Puebla is one of the most emblematic crafts of the country. Talavera, one of the most emblematic handicrafts of México.

The characteristics of this handicraft are, first, that Talavera is resistant to shocks and high temperatures. Second, it is one of the country’s most delicate and distinguished crafts. Third, its principal component is majolica, a common earthenware and metallic glaze from Puebla and Tlaxcala. 


Puebla is where authentic Talavera is still available. In 1995 its denomination of origin was Talavera de Puebla, but since 1997 has been only Talavera. In 2019 UNESCO declared the artisanal manufacture of Talavera as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

How did it arrive in México?

According to the Institute of Anthropology and History, Talavera arrived in Mexico in 1550. Thanks to artisans from Talavera de la Reina, Spain, who settled in Puebla. There they mixed their techniques with the use of clay from the indigenous peoples, creating a completely original product. 

The eighteenth century was its golden age. Every high society family aspired to have tableware made of this material. As a result, there have been Talavera exhibitions in Mexico City and even New York.


Its process of creation

Its elaboration has not changed much since the colonial period. First, artisans mix white clay and black clay and knead. Then they mold the mixture. Finally, artisans leave it to dry for days in unventilated spaces by hand or in mature.

The pieces are put in the oven where they are then turned into “jahuete,” which means baked cookie. After they are sanded, they are glazed and decorated. The colors used are blue, yellow, black, green, orange, and mauve. Finally, we baked them again and that is it.


The use of Talavera

Mainly, everyday utensils such as kitchen utensils, vases, flowerpots, and vases are made with Talavera. You can also find it in decorative figures or religious articles. In general, items of this material are very popular because they stand out for their elegance.

Talavera is also decorative in the interior and exterior of houses. In the interior of the homes, you can see sinks and basins made of this material. Talavera tiles are an element that enhances the beauty of the facades of buildings, churches, and kitchens in Puebla.


The creation of Talavera objects is an art in Puebla. However, only a few workshops still exist. Its beauty is unique and incomparable. One of these items is a perfect souvenir of a trip to Puebla.



If you liked this article, we recommend you:

The Mayan origin of hammocks.

Subway archeology: sites to explore underground in Puebla

Why in Oaxaca clay belongs to women?

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