/Tin Art /Tin Animal Figures

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Tin Animal Figures

The Radiance of Tin Art

Tinwork is one of Mexico's most colorful crafts. Rooted in Spanish colonial times, the art of tin making has changed very little since. Tin was originally manufactured by dipping thin sheets of iron into molten tin to coat them with a bright, durable surfactethat was resistant to rusting. These figures are entirely handmade (cutout, punched, embossed and soldered) by craftsmen using great precision and artistic flair. Painted with durable lacquer and enamel colors, tin figures are inexpensive, lightweight and long lasting.

In this section of our Mexican tin art collection we offer flat animal ornaments (except for birds), from several of Oaxaca's acclaimed tinsmiths. They tool these figures by hand, four flat pieces of tin at at time. They are not stamped out with a machine. The artists paint the tin in durable and shiny lacquer, enamel and sometimes automobile paints to give then a gleaming, enduring finish.

Please take the time to browse our other tin products, including animal figures, birds, Day of Dead, Christmas ornaments and tin stars, nicho frames and fridge magnets. Use the drop-down menu above, under TIN ART.

The age of tinwork in Mexico goes back at least to the 1700s. Tin was originally manufactured by dipping thin sheets of iron into molten tin to coat them with a bright surface that was durable and highly resistant to rusting. (However, if the surface is scratched, revealing the iron underneath, it will begin to rust if exposed to rain or high humidity.) For an artisan, the appeal of working with tin is its lightness, strength and low cost. It is easily bent, cut and soldered to form intricate shapes.

In eras gone by, Mexicans decorated their homes with tin photo frames, candelabras, lanterns, tin and glass frames (nichos) holding pictures of saints. In humble churches, tin crowns were set on the heads of statues, lit tin lanterns were carried during processions, tin candlesticks adorn the altars.

Tinwork is often referred as the poor man's silver. In Mexico, every religious and festive object handcrafted in silver has a counterpart in humbler forms made from tinplate. Yet the same degree of skill and passion the silversmiths put into their work could be found in the less opulent pieces made by tinsmiths. Their pieces, too had an alluring shine, that charming brilliance.

These days, tinsmiths in Oaxaca and San Miguel de Allende are carrying on the traditions, making Christmas decorations, tin soldiers, heart-shaped wall plaques and a variety of clever toys. Most of their work is for export to the southern United States, where tinwork is one of the most visible manifestations of Mexican Culture. Most popular with American collectors are the cheerful, flat ornaments, of which we have many here at Viva Oaxaca Folk Art. Take a look and enjoy.

Products

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Alligator, tin ornament
Tin alligator is handmade in Oaxaca
SIZE: 3.5 inches long
SKU: TN-3_006
$3.75
Qty
Angel Cats - Set of 3
Mexican punched tin ornament, handmade in Oaxaca
SIZE: 6 inches tall; three cats, blue, red and yellow
SKU: TN-6_034
$15.00
Sold Out
Animal Collection - 10 Tin Ornaments in Box
10 different tin animal ornaments, as shown, in a box
SIZE: Ornaments measure 4 - 5 inches tall
SKU: TN-3_001
$32.50
Qty
Armadillo, tin ornament
Mexican tin armadillo is handmade in Oaxaca
SIZE: 4.5 inches long
SKU: TN-3_004
$3.75
Qty
Black Dog, tin figure
Dog tin figure is handmade in Oaxaca
Dog measures 5 inches tall and is painted on both sides.
SKU: TN-3_038
$3.75
Qty
Bull, tin ornament
Mexican punched tin ornament, handmade in Oaxaca
Bull measures 4 inches long
SKU: TN-3_010
$3.75
Sold Out
Burro, blue, tin ornament
Mexican punched tin ornament, handmade in Oaxaca
Burro measures 4.5 inches long
SKU: TN-3_015
$3.75
Sold Out
Butterfly
Mexican punched tin ornament, handmade in Oaxaca
SIZE: 4 inches wide
SKU: TN-5_014
$3.75
Qty
Cat with Angel Wings, tin ornament
Mexican punched tin ornament, handmade in Oaxaca
Cat is 4 inches long and painted on both sides.
SKU: TN-3_030
$3.75
Qty
Cat, blue tin ornament
Tin cat ornament handmade by Angel Valdez Studio
SIZE: 3 1/2 inches long
SKU: TN-3_034
$3.75
Qty
Chicken In Basket, tin figure
Tin figure handmade in Oaxaca, Mexico
SIZE: 4 inches long
SKU: TN-3_029
$3.75
Qty
Coyote, pure copper figure
Mexican copper ornament, handmade in Oaxaca
Measures 4 inches long by 4 inches tall.
SKU: TN-3_024
$7.95
Qty
Coyote, tin ornament
Tin coyote is handmade in Oaxaca
SIZE: 4 inches tall
SKU: TN-3_002
$3.75
Sold Out
Dog (pink), tin ornament
Tin dog figure handmade in Oaxaca by Angel Valdez family
Measures 5 inches long. Painted both sides.
SKU: TN-3_035
$1.95
Original price: $3.75
Save 48%
Qty
Dog (yellow), tin ornament
Mexican punched tin ornament, handmade in Oaxaca
SIZE: 5 inches long
SKU: TN-3_031
$3.75
Qty
Dog with Angel Wings, tin figure
White dog with angel wings, tin ornament is handmade in Oaxaca, Mexico
Dog measures 5 inches tall and is painted on both sides.
SKU: TN-3_037
$3.75
Qty
Elephant, tin ornament
Mexican punched tin ornament, handmade in Oaxaca
Measures 4 inches long
SKU: TN-3_032
$3.75
Qty
Fish, Marlin
Mexican punched tin ornament, handmade in Oaxaca
SIZE: 5 inches long
SKU: TN-3_025
$3.75
Qty
FISH, tin wall plaque
Handcrafted tin fish by Aquino Family Artisans in Oaxaca
Gleaming fish plaque measures 12 inches long by 7" tall.
SKU: TN-1_003
$8.50
Qty
Fish, tropical #1, tin ornament
Mexican punched tin ornament, handmade in Oaxaca
SIZE: 4 inches long
SKU: TN-3_023
$3.75
Qty
 
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