Tuesday, June 9, 2009

“Tinajónes” (Water Jars) & Red Flowers

“Tinajónes” (Water Jars) & Red Flowers

I just finished these two thick impasto paintings of Cuban water jars (what’s she up to now, you might be asking…). Actually, a new friend, Daisy, who is from Camagüey, Cuba, suggested I paint these.

I find these water jars, or tinajónes to be a great subject to paint and the story behind them is very unique and interesting. Even though I’m Cuban, I really didn’t know too much about their history. Apperantly the Andalucians from Spain brought them over to Camagüey to be used for water storage.

According to Cuban Traditions, the tinajón was placed in the gardens of the houses with wide portals, where it can still be observed half of its round form buried under channels that bring the fresh water from the red tiled roofs. The tinajónes and the tile roofs were produced in the handmade shops of the region, denominated tejares. They used mud from the Sierra de Cubitas.

In Miami we still see a lot of houses that show off a tinajón, laid on it’s side, as part of the landscaping. My old neighbor, Marta, told me that whoever had one of these in their yard was from Camagüey. I don’t know whether that’s true or not, but they’re such a neat element in a garden that I’m thinking one would look great in front of my house!

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