ACTIVITIES DURING THE IWEMM9
Fresh Mushroom Exhibition
As part of the Biocultural Mushroom Fair on the morning of Friday, July 14, 2017, we have planned a fresh mushroom exhibition. The fresh mushrooms will be exhibited in basketwork from different Mexican ethnic groups, and will be a fantastic opportunity to understand the huge diversity of edible mushrooms in Mexico and also the beautiful basket art which has been developed over millennia by a number of ethnic groups from different parts of Mexico. In previous exhibitions similar to this, more than 80 species of wild edible mushrooms have been displayed. This activity will depend on rainfall the prior weeks.
Mushrooms have been used in Mexico since millennia as food, medicine and for ceremonial purposes. Currently the country is one the largest genetic centers of wild edible mushrooms worldwide. More than 400 species of wild mushrooms are consumed by different ethnic groups across the country and more than 5,000 names are used to designate them in different local languages. When the Spaniards arrived in the beginning of the XVI century, traditional mycological knowledge was prolific, accurate and widely distributed. Different archaeological, linguistic and ethnological evidence has remained as proof of this mycophilia. However, this traditional knowledge generated over millennia is currently at risk, mainly due to Westernization and the loss of native forests. Various efforts to rescue and promote traditional knowledge have been carried out across the country. Additionally, a biotechnology useful in inoculating native trees with edible ectomycorrhizal mushrooms has been developed at the Colegio de Postgraduados over the last several decades. The success of this biotechnology has been proven by increased survival in field experiments, with subsequent success in reforestation, carbon sequestration and global climate change mitigation.
As part of the activities of the IWEMM9, there will be an audiovisual display entitled
“Mushrooms and Humans in a Changing World,” directed by the prestigious Mexican filmmaker Jaime Kuri (www.jaimekuri.com). The premiere will take place during the Opening Ceremony on the morning of July 11, 2017 at the Colegio de Postgraduados.
Cultural Activity in Mexico City
On Wednesday, July 12, 2017, we have planned a visit to Mexico City in the evening, from 20:00 to 22:00. There we will take in a ballet by Amalia Hernández, also known as the Ballet Folklórico de México—a Company with international prestige, which has been active during the last six decades—at one of the city’s most impressive theaters, The Palace of Fine Arts. Tickets are included in your registration fee, as is dinner after the show. The company is known for its beautiful choreography and costumes, showing the great traditional multiculturalism of Mexico. More information of the ballet and the Palace of Fine Arts in Mexico City is available here:
Visit to the ancient city of Teotihuacan or visit to forests nearby Texcoco
On Thursday, July 13, 2017 there will be two optional activities:
The first option will be a visit to oak (Quercus sp.), fir (Abies religiosa), and pine (Pinus spp.) forests near Texcoco. During this visit we will be in contact with a big fungal diversity and with native gatherers of edible wild mushrooms descendants of the Aztec or nahuatl people, belonging to communities which have prevailed at least during the last seven centuries. These mushroom gatherers known locally as hongueras (for woman) or hongueros (for men) have a traditional knowledge which has been generated, and transmitted during millennia and currently still prevailed. This activity will be organized by Prof. Juan Jose Almaraz Suarez, from the Colegio de Postgraduados.
The second option will be to visit the ancient city of Teotihuacan.
Teotihuacan (where men become Gods according to the Aztecs), is more than two-thousand years old and was recognized by UNESCO as a world humankind heritage site since 1987. It is located just 30 km North from the Texcoco city. Currently, the arch ecological site covers a surface area of 83 square kilometres (32 sq mi). You can find more information on the web page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teotihuacan
We will appreciate if in your registration form you fill which activity you prefer to take. Also, please check which of these activities are included in the registration fee that you are paying.
Museographic exhibition “Mexican Codices and Mushrooms”
Despite the fact that most of the Mexican pre-Hispanic writings were destroyed, some of them survived. Amazingly, it is possible therefore to analyze pre-Hispanic and colonial writings where mushrooms are either illustrated or mentioned. On Friday, July 14, 2017 there will be a unique museographic exhibition related with the Mexican Codices and the mushrooms. This will be a once-in-a-lifetime to travel to the past, and to know the cultural importance during millennia for different ethnic groups in ancient Mexico either as a food, medicine or ceremonial importance, mainly in central and southern Mexico.
Biocultural fair “Mushrooms, Humans and Nature in a Changing World”
One of the most important cultural activities of the IWEMM9 will be carried out, on the morning of Friday, July 14, 2017, the last day of the IWEMM9. There will be a biocultural fair, which will include the opportunity to be in contact with people from different ethnic groups of Mexico, to see, and if you want to buy, some traditional Mexican mushroom handicraft made directly from people belonging to Mexican ethnic groups, to promote the fair commerce, to taste traditional cuisine with mushrooms, to see the great diversity of traditional dressings in different parts of Mexico, to have a commercial exhibition, to have the opportunity to enjoy ludic activities related with mushrooms, and of course to enjoy the other activities already described as the fresh mushroom exhibition and the museographic display of Mexican Codices and mushrooms. This is planned to be a great Mexican fiesta related with people, nature and mushrooms!