Thursday, September 25, 2014

Fall Photo a la Mitzi

Photo of an apartment wall on Sept 21, 2014...Mitzi paintings, folkart collection and fresh tomatoes. Have a beautiful day.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Arnulfo Mendoza 1954-2014

photo from Mary Jane Gagnier
I am sad to say a well known and really good Oaxacan artist died suddenly on Mar 8 at his home at La Mano Magica in Oaxaca. He was a innovative weaver, an internationally recognized painter and printmaker whose scope extended beyond most of his contemporaries. Born in Teotitlan del Valle in one of the most renown weaving families he started weaving around 8 years of age. He later went to the art university in Oaxaca, Bellas Artes.  He and his first wife, Mary Jane, founded La Mano Magica, one of the first galleries to present fine art, folk art and textiles in the same gallery. I remember such great openings of shows there and the comradery of other artists, Arnulfo, Mary Jane and all their staff and friends. La Mano Magica is still one of the best galleries in Oaxaca.

A poignant photo of Arnulfo's hat on his coffin in the patio for a day at La Mano Magica in Oaxaca. March 8 2014. Rest in peace Arnulfo.

I like this photo of Arnulfo weaving and probably making a joke, laughing. It reminds me of all the times I stopped in to La Mano and found him and his other weavers like Tito Mendoza working in the patio of the old building. We had lots of laughs together. I learned much about the mythic and historical beginnings of his dear pueblo, Teotitlan del Valle.

 Sudden deaths are so hard to deal with whether one is close by in Oaxaca, or like me, now in Oregon, far away. An old friend gone on to live in the stars or be reborn in Teotitlan del Valle as they believe there beneath Gi'bets.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Entering 2014

I wish you a creative, centered year filled with everything you need to be happy.

Monday, October 21, 2013

A Day of the Dead Painting

Coyote Women meet in the Zocalo

They are getting together for a comparsa that will wind its way thru el centro de Oaxaca.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Oaxaquita's Summer Celebrations

 A photo from Oaxaca, the fireworks of the castillo.  Fiesta time in Oaxaca, the Guelaguetza, various celebrations thoughout the state, and in the city.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Temple at Monte Alban

One of the oldest temple pyramids at Monte Alban which was started in 500 BC. Monte Alban sits on a mountain top outside Oaxaca Mexico.  I love this particular temple and used to be able to climb on it.  It is where I really understood there were advanced civilizations here in the Americas before the Europeans arrived.  It reminded me of the Hopewell Mound where I grew up in Indiana.  They are from the same time period. This one built by Zapotecs, one of the oldest Mexican cultures. It is more architectually advanced than the mound in Indiana. 

The Ancient Americas are more interesting to me than Asia or Europe or the Middle East or India--though I have read alot about those ancient cultures. Still, here in the Americas I have explored and meditated at some of the most amazing and interesting places.  These sites were created by people who did not use the wheel and had no large draft animals.  Monte Alban, a flattened mountain top, was constructed by human hands only.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Spring Photos from Teotitlan del Valle.

 The local bus from Oaxaca, thru Teotitlan to Benito Juarez in the mountains.
Part of an old wall from the prehispanic temple in Teo.  Very old--recently exposed behind the church.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Spring....Zapotec Offering...Painting by Mitzi Linn

Here's a little gouache painting I started awhile back and tucked away to finish later.  Corn offerings, or sacred bundles, in the foreground along with the water and fire serpents.  Time to plant somewhere in Zapotec land, or Oaxaca.  May spring bring new life and a respect for the old customs and cultures.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Photo of dancer...La Danza de la Pluma....Oaxaca

La Espirituosa

A card I received for my birthday.  I had to laugh.  Refers to my old days as Tarot reader, and healer and teacher.  Gosh, that whole era in my life seems like a dream that lasted about 15 years and ended about 20 years ago. It's like a past life within this one--a life I felt passionately about and did my best to try to be of benefit to others.  After that, painting took over. Still I hope my artwork inspires and helps others.  The friends signed the card saying "stay weird".

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Recuerdos de Oaxaca

Painting by Mitzi Linn.....Oaxaca II: 2004

        Recuerdos de Oaxaca
The mescal I am drinking evokes Oaxaca. 
Memories, sound collages, smells/ 
textures create images in my psyche.
      Warm days and nights,
my friends, folk musicians, jazz musicians,
singing and playing in the palm tree patio of
the original El Sol y La Luna Restuarant.

I listen to familiar songs.  Grupo Quetzalcoatl, and then
Lila Downs’ distinct strong voice rising above a pueblo band.
“Pinotepa”, “La Sandunga”  
“La Cancion Mixteca”, which, written by
a homesick Mixtec migrant worker in the US,
plaintively calls up “ tierra del sol.....
I am dying to see you.....................”

Mexico’s myriad of technicolor impressions!
Friends’ faces, native traje, the Zocalo, long bus rides, churches,
Colorful houses and mountain market towns crowd my mind.
conversations in Spanish and English, Zapotec,Mixtec--
this overflow of images, weave together
inner and outer realities.

Nostalgia,  like Moctezuma’s revenge,
strikes suddenly, renders me incoherent.
Whatever I have to say is lost 
or inexpressible.

               Here in el norte
Electric lights struggle against the gray Oregon day.
No light here ever shines bright enough to touch
the light in the valley between
the Sierra Madre and the Sierra Juarez.

I decorate this living room to
resemble a folkart store in Oaxaca.
I put bright colored weavings and warm rugs
around myself, light candles and
sing along with Lila.  

Carved painted animals,
Sun and Moon masks, rattles for Mayan ceremonies,
Tibetan tangkas and Huichol yarn paintings
Create my familiar altar
    in this sacred space.

Tasting a little mescal,
calls up Cocijo, the Zapotec god of
thunder, rain, lightning,
I offer it to the Virgins on the Altar,
    Guadelupe and Juquila,
and to benefit all beings.

The tiniest wiff of that dark smoky drink is
enough to awaken the living
the dead, and those somewhere
in between.

Offered copal  smokes the room.
I sit in front of this newly made altar
I begin to send out blessings
to all who come to mind.
Their names become a chant......
The chant entrances me.

Mitzi Linn 1997



Thursday, January 3, 2013

New finds at Atzompa Oaxaca.

 Portrait of "8 Temor" a person from Atzompa around 800 AD.

 Closer foto of the 2.5 ft figure.  Painted still in red, green and oche.  

 The remains of a goddess ceramic vase or pot from the same tomb.

Here are some photos from INAH in Mexico of ceramics found at a Oaxacan tomb.  The ancient Zapotecs made these wonderful personal vases and offering ceramic pots representing actual people, as well as dieties.  I have always really admired them since seeing them first in the 1980's  But most are not colored like these and are just gray clay. 

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Happy Holidays/Felice Navidad

Card by Judy Perry of Bisbee, AZ.....

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Serpent Heart--poem and painting.


 Serpent Heart

Last night at 30,000 feet
Flying out of Mexico City
Death passed us by

Travelers, migrant workers, homegoers, Oaxaquenos
in an overloaded Mexicana flight going home for the
fiesta of Los Muertos, de Todos Santos.

In that overloaded plane
migrants with their boxes, bags,
their hopes, memories of their tierra,
and families, their hard work left in the US,
the young, middle aged and old,
hearts yearning to embrace their loved ones again.

Me too, una Americana con raices profundo
en la tierra Oaxaquena, impatient to resume my
other life.

Suddenly at 30,000 feet a big noise
vibrated thru the plane like aloud fog horn. 
I’d been talking to the guys next to me.

We stopt talking.
No one said a thing about the noise.
Pues, no pasa nada.

Death passed by, gave us a look.
That heavy Mexican plane
in a heavy clouded sky.
I acknowledged it. 
My physical life could suddenly end.

I found my mala, blessed by Tibetan masters,
and began OM TARE TU TARE ......Tara’s mantra
until I could understand and feel calm
the possibility of passing into spirit.

In my mind's eye, my guru appeared briefly. 
I didn’t want to die right then.
I knew that no one on the flight did either.

They just wanted to get home
to their pueblos, their queridos, the fiesta.

I prayed for all of us. 
I finished the 108 recitations of the Tara mantra
The noise stopped.
We started talking again.

I loved Oaxaca even more when we landed.

Mitzi Linn.....2009

Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Milky Way in Peru

I love this photo, and can see how the Milky Way is a road in the view of ancient Americans.  It's also like a feathered serpent dancing in space--an icon for me. Happy Nov and Day of the Dead to all today, Nov 1. 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Signs of the Time

I am playing around with a mask from Mexico.  Sorta both Halloween, when we mask ourselves and transform into something else, and a nod for the Day of the Dead with the skeleton mask.  

Hallowmas, a pagan holy day/night (Oct 31) and Nov 1 and 2, the Day of the Dead share roots in our human past.   In the language of initiation, time to journey to the underworld, the inner self, to discover new riches inside.  And time to reconnect with one's ancestors, family and clan members living in the spirit realm. And here in el norte heading into the dark time of winter. 

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Day of the Dead Altars

Altar by Mitzi Linn and Vicky Ayers for Migrant Education at Due Fine Arts Eugene, 1997.  It is dedicated to Migrant workers, for those who died crossing the border to work or died working in our fields.

Altar created by Mitzi Linn called "Pensando en La Muerte" for Maude Kerns Art Center in 2003.  Dedicated to the people of Oaxaca.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

El Dia de los Muertos

Painting in gouache by Mitzi Linn.  Title "Guadelupe Returns"

One of my favorite paintings..the Virgin of Guadelupe encapsuled in a corn tassle or kernal.  She returns to the cornfield of an indigenous farmer who is making a ceremony to honor the ancestors and family members gone on, to honor the corn as sustenance and also one of the people's ancestors.  Candles, an old diety or ancestor, and copal are part of the full moon offering.  She holds the fragile earth in her hands.  She is asking if we really care about our planet.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Autumn in New Mexico

Photo I took of the Pedernal from Ghost Ranch one autumn a while back.

Here's one of Georgia O Keefe's paintings of her beloved mountain in New Mexico. One of my favorite mountains too. Wishing I was near it now near Abiquiu and on Ghost Ranch.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Coyote Woman Flies over Abiquiu, New Mexico

Gouache painting I did after spending some beautiful times in New Mexico. And a salute to Georgia O'Keefe who's presence is still felt. Painting title is "Coyote Woman visits Abiquiu." I love fall in New Mexico.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Photo of the Quetzal Bird.

I grabbed this foto from FB. Such an important bird in the mythology of MesoAmerican ancestors....Sept 5 was the day of the Quetzal....

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Fireworks in Sola de Vega, Oaxaca

The annual festival for their patron saint includes this dance with a dancing toro (bull) with fireworks attached. I love these events, but try to stay a safe distance when involved. I suppose though that getting a little of that irrepressive fun energy in the form of sparks is good for the soul.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Maya Shrine and Guatemalan Daykeeper Ritual Layout

I once visited this Maya shrine. I like to study all kinds of spiritual and religious practices. Photo by Antonio Turok of a shrine outside Chichicastenango, Guatemala. An old diety in stone who is visited during Holy Week. (Pasquale Abaj)
Photo by Ed Barnhart from Maya Exploration Center.......a beautiful offering with the colors of flower petals and candles relating to the directions. In Guatemala these offerings are made in ceremonies at old ritual sites (ruins) at mountain top shrines and other places.

Friday, August 17, 2012

An Urn from a Zapotec Tomb at Atzompa, Oaxaca

Here's a recently discovered funerary urn from a tomb at Atzompa, a site adjacent to Monte Alban and outside the town of Atzompa which is famous for its ceramics today. The urn is colored red. From around 700 of the current era. Beautiful. The Zapotecs created amazing urns to bury with their elite. This is an example. Valley of Oaxaca.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Mi Querida Oaxaca

I took this from FB, a site called YO SOY OAXACA......I love this photo looking up from the Alameda, up Garcia Vigil. Boy, I am homesick for this beautiful and carinoso place in the world and my life.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

La Guelaguetza in Oaxaca--final day Mon July 30

La Danza de la Pina features women dancing with a pineapple. Pineapples come from where these dancers live (Tuxtepec area). The pineapple has to be a symbol of the womb, and this a kind of dance about women reaching puberty.

These dancers are flying. I think they are from the Oaxaca coast area.

Las Casahuates....painting and foto.

Las Casahuates.....a painting series. The painting above has a blooming woman tree, meant to evoke the casahuate trees that bloom in the fall in Oaxaca. My friend the feathered serpent and the bird in the tree top have to do with consciousness raising energy (kundalini), perhaps influenced by that lightning striking the old temple base or dance platform.

A photo of a casahuate bloom. Usually they are full of honey bees.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Mitzi Linn's Studio Sale

Oasis # 5 Gouache Painting by Mitzi Linn

My Studio Sale this weekend in Eugene includes my paintings, cards, reproductions, and folkart collected from Oaxaca Mexico. Email me at if interested.

Monday, July 23, 2012

La Guelaguetza in Oaxaca today

Dancer from San Martin Tilcajete, La Danza de la Pluma

Dance group from the Istmus of Tehuantepec....La Sandunga

Chinas Oaxaquenas.......with their offering baskets....

Images from the Guelaguetza in Oaxaca, taken yesterday I think. From a FB site called La Guelaguetza. I really wish I was there. I love the dances from the state of Oaxaca, and all the connections to their history and hermosa cultura.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

OREGON COUNTRY FAIR...43 years of being FAR OUT

Dear Ms Fantasy play us a tune. It's time for the fair again. Here's Mitzi at her funky booth at the fair. She's had a booth since 1980. Before selling her art reproductions, she used to read Tarot. Photo on blog on right side.

You can find out more about the country fair, the hippy institution, that starts today for the vendors and crews.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

La Guelaguetza in Oaxaca

In July Oaxacans will celebrate another Guelaguetza in Oaxaca. The modern fiesta started in days before the Spanish conquered Mexico, when various groups from the area got together to dance and trade in honor of the local Corn Goddess.

The Corn Goddess is still honored at the opening of the modern fiesta, held at the auditorium overlooking the city. The dancers and musicians are from pueblos all over the state of Oaxaca--mostly the indigenous peoples -- Mixe, Mixtec, Zapotec--They identify with their pueblo usually, not their indigenous language group. Still, that word is Zapotec--Guelaguetza--and means an exchange of goods and services. This exchange still goes on in the pueblos (towns) when there's a wedding, baptism or some other fiesta.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Jaguars--Ancient Olmec and Modern Mayan

Ancient carvings from the Olmecs of the Jaguar, one of their most represented spirit animals. Below, dancers in Jaguar costumes from a village in Chiapas, Mexico.
According to Walter Morris, who took the photo, these are like the traditional warrior costumes of the Aztecs. The cloth is painted with spots. The masks are carved wood, and worn as helmets.