Art Mystery: How long did muralist Marion Greenwood stay in Chapala?

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Nov 062017
 
Art Mystery: How long did muralist Marion Greenwood stay in Chapala?

American artist Marion Greenwood (1909-1970) was definitely in Chapala at least once, as evidenced by a water-damaged drawing entitled “Chapala girl”, dated 1969 and offered for sale on EBay in 2017. Greenwood traveled south of the border for the first time in December 1932 and spent several years in Mexico, where she is best known […]

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Archaeologist Dr. Betty Bell lived in Ajijic in the early 1970s

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Nov 022017
 
Archaeologist Dr. Betty Bell lived in Ajijic in the early 1970s

Archaeologist Betty Bell and her husband William W. Winnie Jr. (1928-1988) lived at Calle Colón #36 in Ajijic for several years in the early 1970s. While the precise dates are unclear, the couple made many significant contributions to village life. Bell gained a doctorate in archaeology at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and […]

Modernist architect Pedro Castellanos Lambley designed the Villa Ferrara in Chapala

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Oct 302017
 
Modernist architect Pedro Castellanos Lambley designed the Villa Ferrara in Chapala

Pedro Castellanos Lambley is one of several distinguished Mexican architects who designed and built the fine old homes in Chapala that now give the town its architecturally-eclectic appeal. Castellanos was the architect of Villa Ferrara, at Hidalgo 240, in Chapala. This elegant dwelling was photographed in the mid-1930s by American photographer-architect Esther Baum Born during […]

Geographer William Winnie Jr. and his map of Lake Chapala towns

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Oct 262017
 
Geographer William Winnie Jr. and his map of Lake Chapala towns

Dr. William W. Winnie Jr. (1928-1988) was an American geographer who lived in Ajijic with his wife – the archaeologist Dr. Betty Bell – in the early 1970s. Winnie published several papers relating to Guadalajara and western Mexico and also produced a map of Lake Chapala towns. The map, which was widely-distributed, was the earliest […]

Molly Heneghan designed the first map-poster of Ajijic

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Oct 232017
 
Molly Heneghan designed the first map-poster of Ajijic

Molly Duane Heneghan (now Molly Leland) is an artist and graphic designer whose husband, George Heneghan, the architect of the Danza del Sol hotel in Ajijic, was the subject of a previous post. Molly Heneghan was born into a society family in 1942. She graduated from Concord Academy in Concord, Massachusetts and attended Manhattanville College […]

Manuel López Cotilla described Lake Chapala’s villages in 1843

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Oct 192017
 
Manuel López Cotilla described Lake Chapala's villages in 1843

Following Mexico’s independence from Spain in 1821, a renewed emphasis was placed on the gathering of reliable statistics. Officials of the state of Jalisco made several attempts to gather relevant information, primarily in order to better monitor the state’s development. These efforts began with Victoriano Roa (1825) and were continued by Manuel López Cotilla (1843), […]

NEW RELEASE: Dilemma, a novel by Jan Dunlap

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Oct 182017
 
NEW RELEASE:  Dilemma, a novel by Jan Dunlap

Sombrero Books is pleased to announce that Jan Dunlap’s debut novel – Dilemma – is now available for Kindle readers at the very attractive price of US$2.90. The regular print version (real books are nice!) will be published early next month, well in time for those Christmas gifts! Amazon.com [US $2.90] Amazon.ca [Cnd $3.62] Amazon.com.mx […]

Architect George Heneghan lived in Ajijic from 1971 to 1975

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Oct 162017
 
Architect George Heneghan lived in Ajijic from 1971 to 1975

Architect George Heneghan lived in Ajijic with his wife, Molly, and their two young sons – Eric and Adam – from 1971 to 1975. George Edward Heneghan Jr. was born in St. Louis, Missouri, on 30 April 1934 and died on 6 August 1999. He graduated from St. Louis University High School, studied at the […]

Pre-eminent American travel writer Horace Sutton visited Chapala in 1970

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Oct 122017
 
Pre-eminent American travel writer Horace Sutton visited Chapala in 1970

Horace Sutton (1919-1991), one of the most prolific and well-known American travel writers of all time, and the creator of the term “jet lag”, visited and reported on Chapala in 1970. Sutton was a lifelong travel journalist and editor. He began his career, before the second world war, in the advertising department of The New […]

Photographer-architect Esther Born (1902-1987) visited Chapala in the mid-1930s

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Oct 092017
 
Photographer-architect Esther Born (1902-1987) visited Chapala in the mid-1930s

The American photographer-architect Esther Baum Born is known to have visited Chapala in the mid-1930s in order to photograph the modernist architecture of Villa Ferrara. Esther Baum was born in Palo Alto, California, in 1902. She attended the Oakland Technical High School before entering the University of California, Berkeley, in 1920 to study architecture under […]

Author Vance Bourjaily lived and worked in Ajijic in 1951

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Oct 052017
 
Author Vance Bourjaily lived and worked in Ajijic in 1951

Author, playwright and lecturer Vance Bourjaily (1922-2010) lived in Ajijic during the summer of 1951. We know from Michael Hargraves that Bourjaily completed a play there, entitled The Quick Years that was performed off-Broadway two years later. But the most interesting of Bourjaily’s works from a Lake Chapala perspective is one that was never published. […]

Oct 022017
 
Painter and guitarist Gustavo Sendis (1941-1989) found artistic inspiration in Ajijic

The talented painter and musician Gustavo Sendis divided his time for much of his life between Guadalajara, where he was born in 1941, and his family’s second home in Ajijic. Born on 8 July 1941, Sendis became interested in art at an early age and studied drawing with Juan Navarro and Ernesto Butterlin in 1958 […]

Buddhist author Pema Chödrön lived in Ajijic from 1968 to 1969

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Sep 282017
 
Buddhist author Pema Chödrön lived in Ajijic from 1968 to 1969

Pema Chödrön, then known as Deirdre Blomfield-Brown lived with her husband, the poet and writer Jim Levy, for about a year in Ajijic from mid-1968 until May 1969. Chödrön was born (as Deirdre Blomfield-Brown) in New York City on 14 July 1936. After attending Miss Porter’s School in Farmington, Connecticut, she married at the age […]

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Designer, craftsman and bon viveur Russell Seeley Bayly (1919-2013)

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Sep 252017
 
Designer, craftsman and bon viveur Russell Seeley Bayly (1919-2013)

Designer, craftsman and bon viveur Russell Seeley Bayly (1919-2013) lived in Jocotepec, at the western end of Lake Chapala, for close to forty years. He became a good personal friend, though I now regret not having recorded him as he reminisced about his life, loves and adventures. Bayly was born in Los Angeles, Calfornia on […]

From pre-Castro Cuba to Ajijic: journalist and adventurer Don Hogan

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Sep 142017
 

Journalist-adventurer Don Hogan was one of the more extraordinary characters who lived in Ajijic in the late 1960s and early 1970s. While there is no evidence he wrote anything of significance while living in the village, several people certainly later wrote about him, not always in a very complimentary manner. Stories about Hogan’s life are […]

Photographer Toni Beatty found creative freedom while living in Ajijic in 1976

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Sep 112017
 
Photographer Toni Beatty found creative freedom while living in Ajijic in 1976

Photographer Toni Beatty and her husband Larry Walsh lived in Mexico for several years, starting with a three month stay in Ajijic in 1976. Beatty and Walsh had originally planned to spend six months traveling through Mexico before heading further south to Peru, but they ended up staying in Mexico for nine years! Toni Beatty […]

Nationally-acclaimed sculptor and painter Adolfo Riestra (1944-1989) lived in Ajijic in the 1970s

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Sep 072017
 
Nationally-acclaimed sculptor and painter Adolfo Riestra (1944-1989) lived in Ajijic in the 1970s

Adolfo Riestra, a superb sculptor and painter, lived and worked in Ajijic from about 1971 to 1976. For most of this time, he occupied the former home (Constitución #32) of German artist Peter Huf and his wife Eunice Hunt. Riestra and his partner, Wendy Jones, had 2 young children at the time. Riestra was born […]

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American anthropologist Frederick Starr visited Chapala in 1895

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Aug 312017
 
American anthropologist Frederick Starr visited Chapala in 1895

Frederick Starr (1858-1933), born in Auburn, New York, was a distinguished American anthropologist who visited Lake Chapala over the winter of 1895-1896. Starr, whose primary scientific background was in geology, graduated from Lafayette College in 1882 and was appointed as a biology professor at Coe College. In 1889, as his academic interests shifted towards ethnology […]

Aug 282017
 
Acclaimed American photographer Sylvia Salmi lived in Ajijic in the 1960s and 1970s

Sylvia Ester Salmi (1909-1977) was a prominent and highly respected American photographer. During the 1930s and 1940s, she took portraits of numerous great artists and intellectuals of the time, including Bertrand Russell, Albert Einstein and, in Mexico, Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, José Clemente Orozco and Leon Trotsky. In 1964, following the death of her second […]

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