Postcard from Oaxaca: Memorable faces from ancient times

In the 1970s, artist Rufino Tamayo (1899-1991) spent his own funds to lovingly restore an 18th-century building in his native city of Oaxaca to house his collection of pre-Hispanic art as a gift to his hometown.

The displays of the artifacts in the Rufino Tamayo Museum of Pre-Hispanic Art are unusual because they are grouped aesthetically and set against colors of the artist’s own choosing.

The remarkable faces crafted by native artists of Mexico stare back, some frightening looking but many laughing as at some unknown joke, possibly the photographer.

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