I am Jesús María Quintero Gómez, from Cuenca. My first footsteps in learning esparto craftmanship started in the villages around Murcia, when I was practicing my teaching at local schools. As I arrived in Murcia in 1986 I was gradually approaching to the Murcian culture. It was easy due to my status as displaced teacher in various regions of Murcia.
In 1989 I met Pedro Ortiz Mármol from Puerto Mariel in Morata-Lorca. I was attracted by his handicrafts with esparto and I made then my first steps welcomed by his teachings that I will never forget.
In 1995, life situated me in "Campo de San Juan" (the most western region of Moratalla and Murcia) where I met Antonio (nicknamed "Antonio de Capel". Wise man (he was 82 years old then), small, quiet, patient and kind; with him time seemed to be limitless, without borders; Well I know that I owe him all what I have been learning clumsily! Although if his craft was important, what I treasure the most is his state of permanent patience that he always transmited to me.
After 10 years of working on my own, in 2000 and being encouraged by friends of mine, I faced the exit to the outside. I participated in a joint exhibition of local craftsmanship in Benizar (Moratalla-Murcia) During summer 2002 I participated in three crafts markets in "El Zacatín" in Bullas (Murcia). I have exposed in January 2003 my esparto work in the Leisure Center "Zig-zag" in Murcia. The Cultural Center that Cajamurcia has in Cieza welcomed my work between April 26th and May 11th 2003. This event has a certain importance in a place where esparto has been a verily truly the center in economical, social and familiar life. The shopping centre malls "Las Atalayas" in Murcia has hosted my work during September 2003.
The last two weekends of July 2004 a group of people participated in the Initial workshop in esparto craftsmanship organized by the association "Volver a la Tierra". In August 2005 and organized by the same association "Volver a la Tierra" (Back to Earth). another small group of people was iniciated with the principle stages of esparto craftsmanship.
"...we not knowing the trades we do them with respect."
(León Felipe."Romero sólo ...")
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