Lorenzo Pech May (Pech means fly in Mayan)

 

Location: Ticul
Occupation: Master Potter

Sr. May is a Master Potter living in the city of Ticul. Sr. May’s father was a Master Potter and his father’s father was a Master Potter. This is a living tradition.

Married with five boys and five girls this robust sixty-five year old man boasts thirty-five grandchildren who almost all work at the family pottery factory.

In the modern Mayan world Sr. May would be considered middle-class. His family enjoys many of the modern conveniences available to them, just like other families all over the world.

Sr. May has been making pottery all his life. He would not reveal the secret family recipe for the clay they used but was quite happy to reveal his secret to his success, which we will gladly reveal to you. He told us that in order to be a master potter you must; have patience, work hard, love what you are doing and know how to bake your pieces properly.

He stressed that it was not so much the secret recipe for the clay but the “love” that must go into every piece made. This is why he has no favorite piece to make and has no favorite piece that he has made. He says that he loves them all and in order to produce quality work consistently over time you must love every piece that you work on or you begin to produce sub standard work.

Sr. May loves making pottery, says it is in his blood. Even if he became very wealthy, he would still make pottery because doing it makes him happy.

Twelve years ago, the Chetumal government came to Ticul to study pottery so they could have a factory in their city also. They asked Lorenzo to go to Chetumal to teach their people to make pottery but he had to stay in Ticul to be with his family and to keep his factory going. They offered him 80 pesos a day to be their consultant but he would have been leaving his own factory where he makes at least 300 pesos a day profit!