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Spoon carver in Cusasare, Copper Canyon, Mexico.

Cusasare is a Tarahumara village in Copper Canyon and home to a cool old mission and a little museum with priceless baroque paintings.

Intent on his work this Tarahumara man said nothing as we talked.


Spoonmaking in Copper Canyon

This little guy was sitting beside the museum at the mission in Cusárare one day and I hardly noticed him. Then I realized that he was making something and beside him was the raw product and the detritus of his craft.

The spoon is traced in pencil on cedar blocks and the larger shape up work is done with a handmade hammer and chisel.


The inside of the spoon is hollowed with a curved shaping tool. Note again the pencil mark guide line.

All around on the ground were cedar shavings and chips.

The spoons were in the end smooth and nicely shaped. Someday when my grandkids eat from this spoon, I want to remind them of where it came from...and how impressive it was to witness this little one-legged man shaping them 100% by hand.

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