Lacquers or maques are pastes made from natural oils mixed with minerals that, when dried, harden and offer a lustrous surface. From the prehispanic Mexico the lacquer was used to decorate wood and hard fruit peels. The word Maque is of Arabic origin; the word lacquer comes from the Persian; the first lacquered objects arrived from Japan, China and Cambodia. In the prehispanic era, the macadamia jícaras were used as a symbol of rank, according to the Chronicles of Fray Bernardino de Sahagún. Later, under the influence of the Spaniards, the natives began to elaborate a great variety of wooden objects patterned with westernized designs. The technical process of the Lacquer is divided into the following phases: 1. Extraction and obtaining of raw materials, 2.Preparation of raw materials, 3. Application of the maque, 4. Decoration. In Mexico, specifically in the states of Chiapas, Guerrero and Michoacán, chia fat is used as a blotter and the fat of the worm called "Ax" is used as a base for mixing pasta. The extraction of fat from this worm has been practiced in Mexico since pre-Hispanic times. Nowadays the Mexican laqueros apply the technique in jícaras, guajes, and soft woods for the elaboration of trays, plates, boxes, furniture and toys. Nature with its flowers, its fruits, its butterflies and its birds influences the creative imagination of the indigenous artist.

Guerrero