[by Javier de Blas in La Rioja, Spain] At the beginning of October we passed through the beautiful Sierra Los Vélez Natural Park, in the province of Almería, Spain, where we found the advertised “The biggest esparto grass museum in the world” in a nearby town, El Contador-Chirivel. We were lucky that it was the mayor of the town himself, who showed it to us. Jose is an attractive young man, both because of his physical appearance and because of the enthusiasm he puts into everything he does (even in details such as the carvings he commissioned from a local artist, on the trunks of some trees that had dried up). He told us about the renovation that is happening in his town and above all, his enormous interest in the esparto grass museum, still under development, which may become a landmark in the context of local crafts and for which he still has more than a thousand pieces saved.
Esparto is a plant with long and resistant threads that is abundant in the Mediterranean and is the base fiber for all types of containers and tools for work and the peasant home.
I promised him that I would publish the drawings that I made about the museum and I had wished I could make a live portrait of him, but it couldn’t be possible because he was required for other matters, so I had to take it from the internet.
Such enthusiasm deserves a mention. Best greetings, Jose!