This. This is epitome of you didn’t know you needed one till you saw it! A paper mache turquoise green lion coffee table! It is the most amazing coffee table I believe I have even seen. It is comprised of an almost life size paper mache lion lying on his back with feet up, mouth wide open, and holding a biomorphic shaped piece of glass. It is hand painted a gorgeous bright turquoise green with a cream-colored detailed face. Signed SerMel Tonala Jal, Mexico 91 letting us know it was made at the SerMel workshop in Tonala, Jalisco, Mexico and, we believe, made in 1991. We have seen a few attributed to Bustamante but none are signed by him. They too only have the SerMel signature. And we have seen a few that say they were made circa 1970s but this one clearly has a 91 on it. And by that time Sergio Bustamante was no longer at the SerMel workshop he helped to establish. Hence the “in the style” determination. No matter. This lion is amazing no matter the artist!!!
The SerMel Workshop was founded in 1963 by Sergio Bustamante and Melquiades Preciado in Tonala, Jalisco, Mexico. The workshop’s name was created from the combination of the first three letter of each of their names, Ser-Mel. Their original artwork was immediately recognized in Mexico and around the world and garnered awards. By the end of the 1970s Bustamante left the workshop and went out on his own. The workshop was left in the hands of Melquiades and his brothers Luis and Fausto. Melquiades was the mayor of Tonala and the president of the state’s House of Folk Art. He dedicated his life to the community and to promoting Jalisco’s crafts. Melquiades passed in 1992 but the SerMel Workshop continued production under the leadership of his brothers and their children until October 2013.
This table is a phenomenal work of art and the most unique piece of furniture I’ve run across in a very long time. You need to make it yours!