South America Living

What Are Alebrijes?

The Fantastical Mexican Creatures
alebrije

Alebrijes are brightly colored Mexican folk art sculptures of fantastical creatures.
Alebrije
The first alebrijes, along with use of the term, originated with Pedro Linares. In the 1930s, Linares fell very ill and while he was in bed, unconscious, Linares dreamt of a strange place resembling a forest.
Don Pedro Linares
There, he saw trees, animals, rocks, clouds that suddenly turned into something strange,some kind of animals, but, unknown animals. He saw a donkey with butterfly wings, a rooster with bull horns, a lion with an eagle head, and all of them were shouting one word, “Alebrijes”. Upon recovery, he began recreating the creatures he saw in cardboard and paper mache and called them Alebrijes.
Alebrije parade

I was walking through the streets of Mexico City during Day of The Dead, and just happened upon an entire parade of these creatures. It was epic! Some days you’ve just gotta wander around with no plan…you never know what fantastical creatures you might stumble upon.
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Buen Viaje!

[Mexico City 2013]




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