Mata Ortiz Collectors Society

An Amazing Damian Quezada Olla

An Amazing Damian Quezada Olla

Welcome to the home of the Mata Ortiz Collectors Society! The purpose of MOCS is to provide a place where all things Mata Ortiz-related can be discussed and shared. We believe the village of Mata Ortiz is home to many wonderfully gifted artisans. More important, it is home to wonderful people who love to welcome you into their homes to view their art. In that spirit, we welcome you into the home of the Mata Ortiz Collectors Society, a web-based gathering place for everyone who has discovered or is discovering our village.

What our good friend Spencer MacCallum once called the Pottery of the Palanganas has now become a creative movement that includes carving, jewelry, painting, as well as pottery. It is not just a movement, however, because Mata Ortiz is a vibrant community. It is a place filled with historical, geographical and archaeological delights. It is a place of people, bound together by the land and their love for it. We hope everyone will feel welcome here and treat all guests with respect and dignity. Whether you are historian, dealer, collector, enthusiast or friend, you are invited to enjoy your time here. Grab a cup of coffee, sit back and enjoy your stay. Feel free to ask questions, make comments and learn about the wonderful people and art of Mata Ortiz, Chihuahua. The home of the Mata Ortiz Collectors Society is located in the village on the banks of the beautiful Palanganas River in Barrio Gallegos. Welcome to your Mata Ortiz home! Pasalé!

Organization Mission Statement:

The Mata Ortiz Collectors Society will be a unifying force to provide information, community, resources, communication, ideas and vision to the world of Mata Ortiz enthusiasts.

Phil and Juan Quezada Chat at Juan's 50th Anniversary

Phil and Juan Quezada Chat at Juan's 50th Anniversary

Organization Vision Statement:

To help perpetuate an expanded, enhanced and enjoyable experience for all who are interested in Mata Ortiz: its culture, climate and craft

Organization Goals:

  • To provide an informational resource in a collaborative non-competitive climate

  • To provide an online resource where collectors and enthusiasts gather for communication, information and fellowship

  • To provide a village-based resource for enhancing the artist, collector, trader and tourist experience

  • To enhance the villager’s understanding of and interactions with Mata Ortiz collectors and enthusiasts

  • To bring Mata Ortiz to a new Internet-savvy generation

  • To enhance the economy of the entire village through the accomplishment of all of the above

Our Founding Executive Director

Martin Cota Bronze

Martin Cota Bronze

Phil Stover is the founding Executive Director of The Mata Ortiz Collectors Society. Phil bought his first Mata Ortiz pot, a beautiful big olla by Sofia Sandoval de Teña in the late 1980's. After years of collecting, he made his first trip to the village in 2006. He has made many trips since and has now retired there with his wife and son. Phil belongs to many historical societies and is a member of the Coalition of Independent Scholars, an affiliate group of the American Historical Association. He loves to write and recently published an award-winning history book, Religion and Revolution in Mexico's North.

Phil’s vision is to create a place for Mata Ortiz enthusiasts to gather, learn and share their love for all things Mata Ortiz. He is especially interested in using the Internet to reach out to a younger generation of potential Mata Ortiz enthusiasts. Phil believes MOCS can help the village, the potters as well as the collecting community. Hoping to do all this in a non-competitive environment, Phil is excited about the future of the village and for those who enjoy all things Mata Ortiz. The Mata Ortiz Collectors Society is open for all to join. Phil is available via the contact page or email - to answer any questions you may have about the village.

Catholic Church with Cerro Bola in the Distance

Catholic Church with Cerro Bola in the Distance

The Mata Ortiz Collectors Society will:

  • Provide timely and accurate Mata Ortiz information via the Internet

  • Provide profiles of individual artists

  • Provide a point of contact for individual artists and collectors via its location in the village and the Internet

  • Provide training to the artists in understanding collectors and their needs, especially in visiting the village

  • Encourage the formation of a village council of artists to formulate village concerns and issues

  • Provide a forum for discussion of all things Mata Ortiz

  • Be non-commercial. In other words, will not sell or buy directly on behalf of itself or its members

  • Encourage membership in the society as a means of supporting its activities and efforts

Please link on the image to learn about Phil's new Mata Ortiz Pottery Buyer's Guide that is now available on Amazon.



If you would like to be included in emails (non-commercial) with information about the village and its potters, please contact us via our contact form (the link is available at the top of every page).  We invite all members and friends to ask questions and join in the discussion about our pottery. We live here in the village so if we don't know the answer, we can get it for you!



Phil is always interested in the work of excellent potters who are not well known outside of the village. Their work is wonderful and Phil seeks to provide them a voice by an annual presentation at the Mata Ortiz Trader's Group meeting.

Click the button to see Phil's presentation from several years ago at the Mata Ortiz Trader's Group annual meeting.  It highlights the amazing work of Elias Peña, one of the bright stars of the future of pottery in the village:


Click the button to see Phil's presentation at last year's Mata Ortiz Trader's Group annual meeting. It highlights the amazing work of Javier Martinez Mendez, a very bright star in the sky of Mata Ortiz pottery:

Click the button to see Phil's presentation at this year's Mata Ortiz Trader's Group annual meeting. It highlights the wonderful work of brothers Luis and Armando Rodriquez.

If you have questions or comments about Mata Ortiz, please click here to be taken to the Mata Ortiz Forum page where you can ask anything you want and get an answer from our community. Or, you can simply browse previous questions and comments. If you prefer you can also use the Contact page to ask your question privately.  Thanks so much!

Copyright © 2008 Mata Ortiz Collectors Society All Rights Reserved.