Neftalí Martínez Villanueva was born in La Piedad, Oaxaca, in 1976.
Master of the Art of ¨Alebrijes¨ of Oaxaca.
Together with his brother Noël, they carried on the family tradition to make ¨Cristos¨ (Christ), in reference to the usual production of religious figures carved in the trunk of the corn plant, a cheap and only material available to poor people and artisans. These figurines were usually part of large sceneries describing Christ´s birth, the Crucifixion, weddings and funerals and consisting of dozens of pieces, up to 70 in total. These were meant to be short-lived, for the poor quality of the material. They adorned Church altars and private ones, during specific periods, usually determined by religious festivities. They life span was indeed very short. The 2 brothers´ curiosity and determination lead them to investigate new techniques and methods to produce pieces of higher standards and quality, which, with the passing of years, became authentic sculptures of great merit. The refinement of their products has no equivalent in the world of Oaxaca ¨alebrijes¨.
For the last 15 years, they have participated to the Annual Competition of Giant Alebrijes of the City of Mexico, where they have won First Prize on 3 occasions, Second Prize and Mention on another 4 occasions.
They have also exhibited in the USA, Canada and China.
¨Los Grandes Maestros del Arte Popular de Oaxaca¨, pages 142 and 143