Gold Leafing & Estofado Instructional Residency Program

Location: Puebla, Mexico
All Residency Programs + Dates in 2024 & 2025
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This comprehensive, customized instructional residency program offers competitive professional opportunities for emerging and mid-career, national and international artists age 20 and over.
The Viceroyalty of the New Spain was the result of the amalgamation of Mesoamerican and European civilizations creating a complex system of cultural overlapping. New visual languages incorporated vast artistic traditions with unique iconography and art techniques producing new objects, and images, that completely transformed the course of Western Art.

The city of Puebla is situated at an important intermediate point and a core part of the Atlantic axle, and has a history that spans almost five centuries becoming the capital of baroque art in the Americas. Its strategic location on a major transportation corridor permitted the exportation of Puebla’s regional style of Baroque art and architecture, influencing the development of other cities in the New World. Gold gilding and estofado are two of the expressions of the fusion of European and American styles present in many of the world heritage monuments of Puebla.

Associated with power and divinity, gold leafing has an important place in the history of art and art making. For its glowing characteristics, permanence, flexibility, and light reflection qualities it has been a resource for artists with diverse artistic practices. Estofado has been used extensively to create different qualities of subtle textures, and intricate iconographic patterns; it serves a complimentary decorative technique in which one layer of paint is scratched through to reveal brilliant burnished gold underneath.

Biombo (folding screen) by Alejandro Linares Garcia depicting the conquest of Mexico from the 17th century. Franz Mayer Museum, Mexico City
The Gold Leafing (Gilding) and Estofado Instructional Residency is a mentored production residency that includes 3 weeks of instruction (27 hours total; 9 hours per week) by a prominent master art restorer in several diverse techniques using mediums and supports traditionally used in pre-Columbian and baroque art. Artists can apply the technique of gold and silver leafing; learn the use of diverse stuccos and traditional primers (cactus and lime, rabbit glue, gelatin) and their use on different supports (paper, wood, clay); and experiment with different finishes with natural pigment patinas and egg tempera paint. Instruction is in Spanish, though resident artists need not speak Spanish in order to successfully complete the courseIndividual mentoring is provided by our directorial and curatorial staff for personalized research assistance/resources, project guidance, and critique; participants of this program also work independently in our spaces.

Artist-in-Residence and Arquetopia 2019 Residency Scholarship Award Recipient, Jocelyn Salaz (USA)
Rotunda ceiling detail of the Capilla del Rosario, Templo de Santo Domingo de Guzmán in the central historic district of Puebla, Mexico
Sessions of 3 weeks, with option to extend for 1 to 3 more weeks of continued production as a standard Art, Design or Photography ResidencyDates are not predetermined but are nominated by the applying artist.

Technique Instruction:
  • 27 hours master instruction (9 hours per week)
Staff Support:
  • Each resident artist meets weekly with our directorial and curatorial staff for personalized mentoring, research assistance/resources, project guidance, and critique
  • Furnished, private bedroom
  • 24-hour access to the kitchen for residents to prepare their own meals; residents are responsible for their own meals/food
  • Wireless Internet
  • Use of Arquetopias residency common spaces including outdoor terraces
  • Shared, serviced (single) bathrooms with modern fixtures and showers
  • Housekeeping
Studio Workspace:
  • 24-hour access to large and bright, shared art studio with generous natural light
  • Personal workspace with large table and wall space
  • Some tools provided
  • Materials and supplies for the instructional course provided
  • Materials and supplies for additional project production not included but available for purchase locally
  • Access to special facilities (such as our partnered museums and studios) provided

E-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for program tuition info and application deadlines for this program.

Click here to apply for this instructional residency program.

Arquetopia Gold Leafing Residency Puebla 2023 2024