ARTEzissimo ~ Galeria y Cantina

23 03 2011

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My art becomes the windows to paradise –

people bring this paradise back into their homes….

~ Zissi ~ Franziska Schuett ~

If one needed to decompress from a Caribbean lifestyle, ARTEzissimo — home, kitchen, cantina, art gallery, guest house – would fill this need. White décor, high ceilings, tall windows for an abundance of natural light, green plants – all merge to allow casual conversation, comfort, and maximum appreciation of an eclectic art collection. Options for drinks or dining include the kitchen counter to chat with Zissi and pat the dogs, the gallery with its sofa, or outdoor gardens.

Guests are greeted by Xolo (“cholo”) the Mayan hairless canine. With his bare gray-and-pink splotched body, white Mohawk head-tuft, random hair-bursts, and his prominent and oh-so-Mexico cojones, Xolo initially appears somewhat off-putting (dare we say, “ugly”?). But his pleading eyes, nearly toothless smile, and wagging rat-like tail lovingly win your heart – and after a glass or two of vino tincto or the Zissi Tequila Special (tequila, orange juice, grape fruit juice over ice), he begins to resemble Star Wars’ Yoda or a wrinkly, pock-marked great-grandfather you may have known in a past life. Mickey, the soft, brown-and-white, tail-wagging rescued street-dog appears much more “normal.”

Zissi’s behind the bar, chatting with guests while serving up complimentary botanas – chips and home-made salsas or perhaps a spicy potato/chipotle/chorizo mixture. Wine is 35 pesos; vodka, rum, tequila 30 pesos; beer 20 pesos. She offers breakfast with coffee, and later in the afternoon, features a changing daily cuisine — Thai, Italian, or French often created with fish caught that day; prices range from 65 to 120 pesos. She’s not in this, she says, to make big money. Wine glasses are small, perhaps even a jelly glass. When asked if she’d like more glassware, she responds: “How many wine glasses do I need? Three? This is a Art Gallery, not The Ritz. My friends expect the food, not the plates, to reflect quality.”

Zissi — Franziska Schuett — traveled from Germany to Puerto Morelos in 1988. “I saw Mexico,” she says, “and then went back to Germany where everything was gray and cold. My art is intended to show people we are living in paradise – to open their eyes to appreciate nature. It is part of us.”

She grew up in a family of artists. Her father’s work is displayed in the bathrooms – an ethereal chalk of eight-day-old Baby Zissi hangs in the women’s bath, and a whimsical confession honoring his attraction to early-century whores adorns the men’s room.

A bust of her mother, created by her father — much too bland for Zissi’s taste — now sports piercing Caribbean-blue eyes and whore-red lips. “This is art – I can do what I want.” Her personal style ranges from pencil-pastel realism to 18th-century oils to graphic art to water colors – often with a poignant social commentary. The house itself is art – including a ‘50s-style washing machine with an interior light and black/white cowhide motif in the gallery and a European-style canvas oil propped on the stove of the Cantina. She laments that her artwork is part of her private collection and not for sale – with the gallery now open, it’s a challenge finding time to create.

The gallery itself – a room adjoining the Cantina — houses major pieces by renowned Mexican artists, changing approximately every two months. The current exhibit showcases Luis Alberto Platas Reyes of Cancun.

This Gallery/Cantina has been a long-planned idea, now coming to fruition.

Galeria – Open to Public

Cantina – Private Club for friends, their guests, and other open-minded people – passionate, personable people interested in art of the neighborhood – “You know who you are.”

Hours — 11:00 – 6:00 pm
Closed Wednesdays and Thursdays

77580 Puerto Morelos ~ Av. Ninos Heroes 779
Tel: 87 10576
Cel: 9981 44 95 01



One response

7 09 2014
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