Turquoise Tortoise Art Gallery in Sedona Arizona - One of the finest Sedona Art Galleries featuring contemporary Native American and Southwestern art



For over two decades Escalante Rugs has worked with the traditional Zapotec weavers of Oaxaca, Mexico to provide for them a seamless outlet to bring their dynamic weavings to a grateful world. Over that time, strong relationships – and friendships – have been forged as Escalante works alongside the Native American weavers to create a unique mohair blended wool and to continually adapt color palettes and design combinations to best meet the ever changing world of interior design and decorating.

The expertise and commitment of owner Dean Bulolo represents the second generation of Escalante dedicated to honoring the history and the continuing culture of these gifted weavers. The 100% churro wool rugs are splendid and the unique Escalante churro/mohair blend makes for extra long-lasting, heirloom quality rugs (mohair being the second strongest natural fiber, behind the mane hair of a horse). Escalante’s commitment to meeting clients’ needs is reflected not only in the quality of the selection offered at Turquoise Tortoise Gallery but in Escalante’s unique process of color selection and design flexibility that allows clients to work through the gallery to customize and add personal touches to their own hand-woven rug.

The Zapotec Rug-Weaving Culture

The Zapotec Indians of Teotitlan del Valle, a small village nestled in the Oaxaca Valley in the foothills of the Sierra Madres of Mexico, are known locally as the “people of the clouds.” And their weaving traditions, which have been part of their culture for thousands of years, are alive and well today.

The Zapotecs wove their textiles from cotton and other fibers until the midseventeenth century when Dominican friars introduced the European upright loom and sheep to the New World. The following centuries confirmed the reputation of the Zapotecs as premiere weavers of the “Americas”. Despite recent cultural changes made by other native groups in Mexico, the weaving traditions of the Zapotecs and the impeccable level of craftsmanship evident in their work remain unchanged.

Weaving is intimately tied to the family unit of the Zapotec; everyone in the family participates in the process. Traditionally, it is the Zapotec women who prepare the dyes, card wool from the sheep they raise and dye the wool; it is the Zapotec men who are traditionally the designers and weavers. From a young age children learn to spin yarn and make small decorative hangings and by their teenaged years are supervised in learning the craft in earnest. Nearly everyone in a weaving family is involved in some aspect of the tradition by tending sheep, building looms or spinning yarn.

Many of their geometric designs are found on the Mayan Ruins throughout Southern Mexico and Central America. Other designs include Southwestern and Western motifs, including traditional patterns woven by all the North American Indians, including the Hopi and the Navajo.

It is the Zapotec’s master-quality weaving, and its important link to their family unit, that has directly led to the sustained traditions and the flourishing culture that continues for Oaxaca’s Zapotec people today.

Sizes Available
16 x 40 small table runners
16 x 60 medium table runners
16 x 78 large table runners
2’ x 3’ rugs
2.5’ x 5’ rugs
4’ x 6’ & larger rugs


Click on an image to see a larger view with description and price.

Diamantes & Maguey
by Juan Alvaz
Traditional Zapotec Woven Rug

Earth & Sky
by Fidel Lorenzo
Traditional Zapotec Woven Rug

Ganchos Fino
by Juan Alvaz
Traditional Zapotec Woven Rug

Shonto Flower
by Pedro Sosa
Traditional Zapotec Woven Rug

Saltillo Fino
by Enrique Ruiz
Traditional Zapotec Woven Rug

Guatemalteco Nuevo
by Emilio Rayna
Traditional Zapotec Woven Rug

Member of the Sedona Gallery Association [Sedona, Arizona]

Contact us at mail@turquoisetortoisegallery.com

Native American Art Gallery Site Maintained by agategrrrl.com

The content of this Sedona Native American art gallery site is exclusively owned by Turquoise Tortoise Gallery [Sedona Arizona].

All artwork is the sole property of each respective artist. Any reproduction or other use of the art gallery images contained in this Contemporary and Traditional Native American art website without written permission of the respective artists is expressly prohibited. Native American Artwork prices may vary according to art market value. Turquoise Tortoise Gallery is one of the finest Sedona art galleries featuring contemporary Native American art, turquoise jewelry, and Southwestern art.