In a break from traditional alebrije style, artist Antonio gives us the Oaxacan Alebrije Flying Sea Serpent. History dates the first recorded sighting of a Sea Serpent to Poseidonius, a Philosopher, sometime between 130 and 51 BC. There is not another sighting until the early 18th century off the coast of Greenland. Sightings continue off New England and from Norway. They do not make it down to the lower regions until 1905 when two naturalists saw a long-necked, turtle-headed creature, with a large squarish or ribbon-like fin off the coast of Brazil. After this the sightings of Sea Serpents jump around and science generally attributes them to mis-classified sightings of animals such as oarfish, lungfish, whales and sharks. This does not stop the imaginative Mexican Alebrije Artist from taking advantage of this fantastical creature and giving us the Oaxacan Alebrije Flying Sea Serpent.
The Mexican Alebrijes of Oaxaca are remarkable and irresistible representations of animals both real and imaginary decorated with flowers, other animals, geometrical designs and color; lots of color.
Legend tells us that the first alebrijes were seen a dream by Pedro Linares. Linares fell sick and during his convalescence he dreamt of a jungle filled with fantastical animals in every hue and color and with mixed up parts. Butterfly wings might be on a giraffe. Unicorns cavort with eagle headed lions and frogs have horns. The animals were making a clamor and the only word that Linares could remember was ‘alebrijes.’ Upon his recovery, Linares began to re-create the creature of his dreams in paper mache and he called them ‘alebrijes.’
In the 1980’s and with a history of carving animals, Oaxacan artists began creating the alebrijes that we know today; the colorful wooden animals often in dreamlike designs and color patterns. For a longer and more complete version of the history view Wikipedia and Alebrije.
If sending Mexican Alebrijes of Oaxaca to a friend, please be sure to request FREE Gift Wrapping during your check out.
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Hand crafted of the indigenous Copal wood. Approximately 9 by 4.5 by 5 inches from the end of his tail to the tip of his tongue. Made under fair trade practices and purchased through the Mercado de Artesanias in Oaxaca, Mexico.
One Fair Trade, approximately 9 inch, Oaxacan Alebrije Flying Sea Serpent, artist signed.