Norberto Fabian, Oaxacan Woodcarver, in our Schoolhouse

Last week, our wood shop was full of colorful wooden carvings in the shapes of animals, people, and fantasy creatures. Norberto Fabian visited us all the way from San Martín Tilcajete, the small rural woodcarving community outside the city of Oaxaca, to teach Oaxacan woodcarving for a day.

Students gathered around to see Fabian carve basswood blocks and fresh copal wood, as they use back in his hometown. Each student had the opportunity to carve a few figurines, and some even started painting. Throughout the day, Fabian shared family history, carving advice, and engaged in conversation with students despite speaking only Spanish. Translation was provided to ensure everyone was understood. 

Photography by Verónica Ramírez Martell