ART and Culture by malj

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									Arts and Culture
1.       General analysis of Arts and Culture

             In Baja California Sur, services related to arts and culture are being disseminated mainly

     by four sectors:

            The government sector with federal, state and municipal programs

            Research and higher education institutions

            Institutions in charge of particular social sectors

            Civil society organizations

             The federal government promotes arts and culture through Mexico‘s National Council

     for Culture and the Arts (CONACULTA) and the National Institute for Anthropology and

     History (INAH) that has a regional research center and a set of museums located in various

     parts of the country. The State Coordinating Office for Public Libraries, under the management

     of CONACULTA is in charge of forty-five libraries. Funding to undertake these programs is

     managed through special funds with federal and state contribution. In 2003, INAH allocated

     $2,464,600 USD to carry out these programs.1

             The Secretariat of Public Education, a federal agency, has a broader mission beyond the

     diffusion of culture, because it is in charge of managing public as well as private sector services

     for education; it also has programs that help support cultural activities, particularly in remote

     areas of the state.

      Government of the State of Baja California Sur, V Report on the State of the administration report, 2003-2004.
     Lic. Manuel Cota Montano. Doc. Socioeconomico, p.40
                The state agency in charge of cultural programs is the Instituto Sudcaliforniano de

    Cultura (ISC), which depends directly on the State Coordinating Office of Social Welfare

    Programs. From the administrative point of view, the ISC is head of:

               The State School of Music;

               The House of State Culture, Unit of Popular Cultures;

               The Cultural Unit ―Prof. Jesus Castro Agundez‖ (founded in 1987 in La Paz) that houses

    the ―Pablo L. Martinez‖ historical archives;

               The ―Carlos Olachea‖ Art Gallery;

               The City Theater House, the State Central Library ―Filemon C. Pineda;‖ and

               The Office of the State Network of Public Libraries.

                The ISC also participates administratively in the region’s Museum of Anthropology and History

    under the delegation of INAH in Baja California Sur. The state‘s Coordinating Office for Social

    Welfare Programs, under which the ISC works, manages resources obtained by the Institute to

    carry out its activities. For the year 2003, the amount allocated to the Institute was $1,958,676

    USD.2 The Secretary for Economic Promotion and Development also implements training

    programs on regional arts and crafts in order to promote these as economic alternatives,

    promoting them also with the purpose of preserving regional culture.

                The Baja California Sur Institute for Youth (Instituto Sudcaliforniano de la Juventud) has

    a primary objective to offer young people alternatives for personal development and improving

    their quality of life. Although their political structure and programs depend directly on the

    Mexican Institute for Youth (Instituto Mexicano de la Juventud), they have achieved effective

means of communicating with youth from all over the state through the ―Cultural Forums for

Youth Expression‖3 and the Municipal Councils on Youth (Consejos Municipales de atención a

la Juventud-ConJuve).

           Presently, in the municipal government, there are some programs for cultural

dissemination managed by the Directorate for Culture, Civic and Social Action that carries out

activities directly in the municipalities. Management and functionality of these cultural activities

in some cases are coordinated with other agencies of the state government, like the ISC and

the state‘s Library Network. There is coordination with ISC to organize cultural activities

during the La Paz carnival and the festivities to commemorate the founding of La Paz.

           In higher education institutions (IES) there are programs for cultural dissemination, both

nationally and internationally. Among them are the Autonomous University of Baja California

Sur (UABCS), the La Paz Technological Institute (IT), the World University, and the La Paz

Campus of Tijuana University (CUT). These institutions are mainly concentrated in the city of

La Paz, except UABCS and CUT that have foreign extensions where cultural dissemination

works also take place.

           The higher education institution that is most concerned with culture in the state is the

UABCS. The University has a Directorate of Culture Dissemination and University Extension. In

turn, this Directorate has a culture dissemination department in charge of implementing and

managing these programs. The budget allocated to the UABCS for culture dissemination

programs in 2003 was $396,100 USD.4 As education centers that generate knowledge, higher

education institutions are efficiently complemented by the presence of libraries, art galleries,

    Interview with Juan Manuel Caballero, Coordinador de los Foros de Expresión Cultural Juvenil, ISC. 22-04-2004.
    Government of the State of Baja California Sur, State of the Administration Report.
    theater houses, publishing programs, workshops, and promotion programs for artistic

    expressions in various disciplines where principal beneficiaries are the community in general.

               The Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS) and the Mexican Institute of Social

    Security and Services for Government employees (ISSSTE), albeit not specifically culture-

    oriented institutions, have cultural programs and infrastructure that allows them to offer people

    registered to their services alternative means of personal development, through creativity and

    cultural activities. The ISSSTE allocated $559,723 USD to this purpose in the year 2003.5

               Finally, civil society associations, better known as Non-Governmental Organization

    (NGOs) are working to recover, recreate, disseminate and extend regional, national and

    international culture. In Baja California Sur, there are nineteen NGOs whose primary focus is

    culture related, twelve of which are in the municipality of La Paz, one in Loreto, three in Mulegé

    and three in the municipality of Los Cabos.

              Museums

               The International Council on Museums (ICOM) defines a museum as:

    ―a permanent non-profit institution that purchases, preserves, investigates, disseminates and
    exhibits material testimonies of humankind and their environment, for the education and delight
    of the visiting public. […] This definition […] shall apply without any limitation deriving from the
    type of ruling agency, the territorial character, the functioning system or the orientation of
    collections in the institution concerned.6
            CONACULTA has 1,058 museums registered throughout Mexico that fall into the

    following categories:

                   Museums of anthropology and history

                   Art Museums

        Government of the State of Baja California Sur, Lic. Leonel Cota . State of the Administration Report.
        Atlas de Infraestructura Cultural, CONACULTA, Mexico,
                Science and Technology Museums

                Museums for children

                Others (Wax museum, museum of incredible things, penmanship, etc.)

             Of the 643 anthropology and history museums (60.7% of the total),7 the state of Baja

    California Sur has one each in the towns of Mulegé, Loreto, La Paz, and Cabo San Lucas. Of

    these, the first three are under the custody of INAH.8 Baja California Sur only has two art

    museums: the Music Museum in the village of El Triunfo and the Whale Museum 9 in the City of

    La Paz

             The state also has two science and technology museums: the Natural History Museum

    (UABCS) and the Telecommunications Museum, both in La Paz..

             Baja California Sur does not have any museum specifically designed for children.

    Although children, mainly students in primary and secondary school, visit the other museums,

    there is a need for a center with facilities and features specific to children.

             With a total of ten museums, Baja California Sur is considered one of the states in

    Mexico with the least number of museums, together with Quintana Roo (eleven) and

    Campeche (five).10 However, the national mean of inhabitants per museum is 92,139 while in

    Baja California Sur it is 42,40411 inhabitants per museum. According to assessments by

    CONACULTA, the states of Colima (with 28,559 inhabitants per museum) Yucatan (30,149

       Idem, p.37
      Regional Museum of Anthropology and History of Baja California Sur (La Paz), Museum of Jesuit Missions
    (Loreto), Museum of Cave Paintings of San Ignacio (Mulegé)
      This museum emphasizes both art with a whale theme as well as scientific exhibits on the whales of the Baja
    California Peninsula.
        Atlas de Infraestructura Cultural, Op. Cit. p, 137
        This figure was calculated from the total population figures for BAJA CALIFORNIA SUR for 2000. Anuario
    Estadístico, Edición 2003, Baja California Sur, INEGI-Gob. del Estado de Baja California Sur. México, 2003, p. 43.
    inhabitants per museum) and Nayarit (35,391 inhabitants per museum) are the best equipped.

    By contrast, Veracruz (186,729 inhabitants per museum), the State of Mexico (with 176,982

    inhabitants per museum) and Tamaulipas (161,954 inhabitants per museum)12 are the worst

    equipped ones. Using the criteria of population per facility, Baja California Sur appears to be

    relatively well off.

               Thirty out of the thirty-two state capital cities in Mexico have four or more museums,

    one of which is La Paz.13 La Paz can be considered the best equipped city in the state so far as

    museums are concerned, which reflects the high degree of centralization of these services

    within the city, with little coverage in other municipalities. As a municipality, La Paz has one

    museum per 39,381 inhabitants. The municipalities with the largest number of museums are La

    Paz with five, and Mulegé with seven (including the museum and service units). Municipalities

    with the least number of museums are Los Cabos (one), Loreto (one) and Comondú (one).

    These figures are especially remarkable with the consideration that the municipality of Los

    Cabos, the second most populous in the state (105,469 inhabitants), has only one museum.

    The following are the state museums in Baja California Sur:

-              Regional Museum of Anthropology and History (INAH): This museum is in the city of La

    Paz and focuses on the history of the state, from pre-Columbian times to the first decades of

    the 20th Century. In the year 2002, this museum welcomed 24,335 visitors. During that same

    year, 332 pieces were donated to the museum as the result of a campaign.14 However, during

    the year 2003, the museum had fewer visitors (22,674).15

         Atlas de Infraestructura Cultural, Op. Cit. p.139.
         Atlas de Infraestructura Cultural, Op. Cit. p. 137.
         From the 2002 INAH annual report.
         Monthly reports from INAH from January to June of 2003.
-           Museum of Jesuit Missions (INAH): Located in Loreto and, as the name indicates,

    dedicated to the period during which the Jesuits built missions in Californian territory in the

    17th and 18th centuries. In the year 2002, this museum welcomed 11,283 visitors and 15,918 in

    2003,16 4,635 more than in the previous year.17

-           Unit of INAH services Mulegé (INAH): This Unit is located in the building of the old

    Boleo mining company that functioned in the late 19th Century. This historical building contains

    a museum on mining in Santa Rosalia and in the year 2003, it welcomed 1,686 visitors.18

-           Museum on cave painting (INAH): This museum, located in San Francisco de la Sierra,

    exhibits some painting samples of cave art of the Sierra de San Francisco and is also a general

    information source for the sierra region. In the year 2003, it welcomed 2,787 visitors.19 In the

    archaeological areas of Santa Marta and San Francisco, there were 2,023 visitors, and in Mulegé

    there were 1,189.20

-           Museum of the Californias in Cabo San Lucas: This museum has a collection of pieces

    dating back to pre-Columbian and Mission times, mainly from the Cape region. The education

    and cultural values of this museum are significant as it is the only museum in the municipality.

    Visitors are mostly grade school children, as well as national and international tourists. 21 This

    museum is not under municipal administration and presently is not covered by any INAH

    conservation plan.

       Government of the state of Baja California Sur, Hacia Los Programas Sectoriales con Enfoque regional. BAJA
    CALIFORNIA SUR, Secretaría de Desarrollo y Fomento Económico, Sep. 2001. p.180
       Interview with Lic. Jorge Amao M. Director del Centro INAH BAJA CALIFORNIA SUR Junio-2004
       There was no specific data available with regards to the breakdown of national versus international tourists.
-            Community Museum in Todos Santos: The Community Museum of Todos Santos is

    mainly dedicated to the pre-Columbian, Mission, and revolution eras of the history of the

    community. The museum‘s charter was created under the supervision of the INAH, but at

    present is not under any agency conservation plan. It is located inside the 21st Century Cultural

    Center ―Prof. Nestor Agundez Martinez.‖ This Cultural Center also exhibits the photographic

    archives ―Clotilde Villanueva de Rodriguez‖ that includes a collection of photographs from the

    late 19th Century to the early 20th Century, and the ―Ignacio Tirch‖ painting collection that

    includes valuable works mostly from distinguished artists from California Sur, with four

    outstanding murals of historical importance. This cultural center has other attractions that

    complement the museum, including a replica of a Baja California Sur Ranch home, an ethno-

    botanic garden, and the municipal public library, ―Profesora Columba Salgado Pedrin.‖

-            Community Whale Museum, La Paz: In 1966 the Whale Museum had pieces from thirty-

    one artists and it currently has fifty-seven pieces. It is dedicated not only to whales but to

    cetaceans in general. Apart from the fifty-seven works of art, the Whale Museum contains the

    conserved skeletons of a gray whale, with a length of 11.8 m (38.7 ft.), as well as a fin-back

    whale, approximately 25 m (82 ft.) in length, the only one in Mexico.22

-            Natural history Museum: This museum is under the Autonomous University of Baja

    California Sur and was founded in 1994. It has scientific collections and is open both to the

    general public as well as researchers. Its topics encompass Geology, Paleo-botany and a broad

    sample of wildlife from the peninsula. It also has a section on paleo-anthropology containing

    replicas and reproductions of skulls of hominids and other archaeological pieces.

      Gamez Vazquez Sandino, . “El Museo de la Ballena: Un esfuerzo colectivo” , interview with Víctor Ramos Pocoroba, en
    Revista Altenativa, La Paz, May 9, 2001.
-              Regional Museum of Telecommunications: Founded in 1991, this museum belongs to the

    Secretary of Communications and Transport. It has two show rooms with a collection of

    communication, radio and television devices from 1929 to the present day. One can also visit

    the Hall of Fame with oil paintings and biographies of major scientists in the media, such as

    Samuel Morse, Jose Maria Ampere, Thomas Alba Edison, and Juan de la Granja, a Mexican

    scientist who introduced the telegraph to Mexico. This museum is presently closed to the


-              Music Museum: Located in the historical mining town of El Triunfo, municipality of La

    Paz; this museum is dedicated to music and its history in the Southern part of the peninsula. It is

    housed in a renovated 19th century building and contains different musical objects and

    instruments that belonged to famous musicians from the state, as well as families that were

    instrumental in the dissemination of music in the region. It was founded on December 12th,

    2003. The museum‘s guide walks us through the history of music in Baja California Sur, from the

    musical influence of the missionaries to the instruments that belonged to wealthy families in El


                      Cultural Centers and Cultural Houses

               Mexico‘s national project to establish cultural houses begins in 1947 with the creation of

    the National Institute of Fine Arts (INBA). However, it was only in 1966 that the first House of

         Interview with Issais Verdugo de Vazquez, June 15, 2004
Culture opened in the state of Aguascalientes and almost eleven years later the project

expanded so that in 1977 five houses of culture were established throughout the country.24

         Presently, the country has close to 1,600 cultural houses and cultural centers, managed

both by public and private institutions. In most cases, they function with state and municipal

government resources. Whether their name is Cultural House or Center, these are institutions

dedicated to cultural dissemination, informal art education, cultural promoter training, and art

creation workshops for students of all levels.25

         The state has eighteen cultural houses and, according to CONACULTA‘s figures, is one

of the best-equipped states in this type of resource. The national mean of inhabitants per

cultural house is 61,233; in Baja California Sur, the figure is 24,943 inhabitants per cultural house

(59% above the national mean). Other states that are well equipped are: Zacatecas with 27,624,

Puebla with 30,039 and Yucatan with 30,149 inhabitants per cultural house. The least equipped

states, that is, those with more inhabitants per cultural house or center, are Baja California with

276,374, Guerrero with 133,897, Chihuahua with 113,070 and Sinaloa with 110,297.26

         Cultural houses and centers are distributed in the state as follows:

Table 1: Names and Locations of Culture Houses in B.C.S.

   Atlas de la Infraestructura Cultural, Op. Cit. p. 131.
   Idem. P. 131.
   Atlas de Infraestructura Cultural. Op.Cit..p. 133.
     Cultural House                       Municipality   Village         Ascribed to
     Casa de la cultura del               La Paz         La Paz          State
     Alianza francesa de La Paz           La Paz         Todos           Municipal
     y Centro Cultural Roger                             Santos
     de Conynz
     Centro Cultural                      La Paz         La Paz          ISSSTE delegation in Baja
     FOVISSSTE sudcalifornia                                             California Sur
     Unidad Cultural Jesús                La Paz         La Paz          ISC- Gov. state of Baja
     Castro Agundez                                                      California Sur
     Centro cultural IMSS                 La Paz         La Paz          IMSS delegation in Baja
                                                                         California Sur
     Casa de la cultura de San            Los Cabos      San José del    Municipal
     José del Cabo                                       Cabo
     Casa de la cultura de Cabo           Los Cabos      Cabo San        Municipal
     San Lucas                                           Lucas
     Casa de la cultura de                Los Cabos      Miraflores      Municipal
     Casa de la cultura de                Los Cabos      Santiago        Municipal
     Casa de la cultura de                Loreto         Loreto          Municipal
     Casa de la cultura de santa          Mulegé         Sta. Rosalía    Municipal
     Casa de cultura Prof.                Mulegé         Mulegé          Municipal
     Federico Galas Ramírez
     Casa de la cultura de                Mulegé         Guerrero        Municipal
     Guerrero Negro                                      Negro
     Casa de la cultura de                Mulegé         Mulegé          Municipal
     El Boleo Centro Cultural             Mulegé         Santa Rosalía   Municipal
     de Santa Rosalía
     Casa de la cultura de Cd.            Comondú        Cd.             Municipal
     Constitución                                        Constitución
     Centro cultural ISSSTE               Comondú        Santa Cecilia   ISSSTE delegation in Baja
     Santa Cecilia                                                       California Sur
Source: Instituto sudcaliforniano de la Cultura.

         As may be seen in Table 1, there are eighteen Cultural Houses and Centers in the state

and the highest concentration of this service is found in the La Paz municipality, having six in La
Paz and five in Mulegé. These two municipalities are among the fifty-two better-equipped

municipalities in the country.27

        In the year 2002, 820 visitors (126 adults, 407 youth, 127 children) attended cultural

houses in remote communities and municipalities with less infrastructure.28 These figures do not

correspond at all with the activity, for instance, of the state Cultural House located in La Paz


                    Table 2: State House of Culture Activities in 2003

     Activity                            No. of activities           No. of participants
     Regular workshops                   18                          274
     Summer workshops                    16                          234
     Festivals                           6                           7,273
     Thursdays for children              30                          1,038
     Presentation of books               2                           90
     Courses ―tele-class room‖           5                           55
     Concerts                            9                           5,205
     Shows                               12                          1,440
     Total                               98                          15,609
Source: Instituto Sudcaliforniano de Cultura

        Notwithstanding the scoring that CONACULTA‘s standards have given Baja California

Sur, reality is less positive. Indeed, there are a sufficient number of cultural houses and centers

in the state, but most of them do not have sufficient economic resources to help them provide

quality cultural services. The main deficiencies in these centers include adequate art education

teachers and instructional workshops, because of an inability to pay proper wages.

 Atlas de Infraestructura Cultural. Op.Cit..p. 133.
 Government of the State of BAJA CALIFORNIA SUR, Hacia Los Programas Sectoriales con Enfoque regional.
BAJA CALIFORNIA SUR, Secretaría de Desarrollo y Fomento Económico, Sep. 2001.p.174.
                  Art galleries

           According to the CONACULTA‘s Cultural Information System (SIC), the country has

570 art galleries, of which twelve are in Baja California Sur and thirty-four in Baja California.29

Although this is official (although preliminary), after fieldwork, it was possible to visit more than

twelve art galleries in Todos Santos alone. It should be noted that not all of them are galleries

devoted only to art exhibits, but most sell works of art by both Mexican and foreign artists.

There is currently not an accurate registry of the total number of art galleries in the state.

           Among art galleries that are dedicated to art exhibitions and cultural dissemination is the

―Mtro. Carlos Olachea‖ gallery. It is located inside the ―Prof. Jesus Castro Agundez‖ Cultural

Unit in La Paz, and ascribed to and managed by the Instituto Sudcaliforniano de la Cultura.

           This gallery is dedicated to the exhibition and promotion of visual arts by state, regional,

national, and international artists. To this end, the ―Carlos Olachea‖ gallery is a particularly

good place for young artists to show their work. Younger, less experienced artists, in addition

to well-consecrated state and national artists, have been able to show their work there. One

cannot say that this gallery focuses on any one particular medium, and exhibits range from

cartoons to conceptual art. In 2003, there were seventy-nine shows; three were collective and

the rest were individual shows.

           Different activities associated with the shows taking place in this gallery in 2003 were

fifty-two in total, with 10,553 visitors.30 Summer workshops for children and teenagers in the

―Carlos Olachea‖ Gallery take place in coordination with the Directorate of Municipal Culture.

     Atlas de Infraestructura Cultural. P. 131.
     Interview with Víctor Ramos Pocoroba, cultural promoter of the Galería “Carlos Olachea” May 20, 2004.
    The workshops are offered as an option to strengthen informal artistic education for children

    and young people. Workshops taught there are painting, modeling, and performing arts. The

    other art gallery belonging to ISC and located in La Paz city is the one found in the facilities of

    the State Cultural House. In this gallery, there were twelve art shows in the year 2003,

    welcoming 1,440 visitors.31

    Under the UABCS there are four art galleries, located in:

    1. The hall of the Teatro Juarez (downtown La Paz city)

    2. The hall of the central library.

    3. The corridors of the building of Cultural Dissemination.

    4. The University gallery.

              In these four halls, dedicated to artistic promotion, the UABCS had ten shows in 2003

    and fifteen in the first semester of 2004.32 There are no accurate records about the number of

    visitors to these shows, but organizers predict that between 150 and 200 visitors attended each


             Theater Houses

               CONACULTA has records of 544 theater houses in the country including facilities

    which, regardless of their primary use, are technically equipped for performances. Among the

    areas of the country with a larger number of theater houses, highlights include Mexico City with

    129, Guerrero and Nuevo Leon, with twenty-four each, Tamaulipas with twenty-three, Sonora

    with twenty-two, and Guanajuato and Baja California with twenty-one each. Baja California Sur

       Anexo estadístico del 5º Informe de Gobierno de Baja California Sur, 2003 (Consulted in the archives of the ISC).
       Interview with Víctor Ramos Pocoroba, cultural promoter of the Galería, “Carlos Olachea” , May 20, 2004.
       Anexo estadístico del 5º Informe de Gobierno de Baja California Sur, 2003 (consulted in the arhives of the ISC).
    only has eight theater houses, of which only three have the minimum equipment for

    performances and three are outdoor theaters. The national mean of inhabitants per theater

    house is 179,19734 and even though the state has a total of 53,005 inhabitants per theater,

    theater-oriented activities in each location are lacking. Local performance groups use only two

    of the theater houses in La Paz city. Theater productions from outside the town are very

    expensive and the small budgets for cultural activities do not allocate enough for this expense.

    The situation of theater houses in Baja California Sur is the following:

                   El Teatro de la Ciudad, located in the “Jesus Castro Agundes” Cultural Unit in La Paz city,

    managed by the ISC. In the year 2002, this theater hosted 176 activities, seventy of which were

    drama, thirty-one dance, eighteen music and fifty-seven various.35 In 2003, there were 174

    performances, sixty-two of which were drama, thirty-eight dance, twenty-four music and fifty

    various, with an attendance of 92,217 people. In the year 2003, there was an increase of 15.3%

    in the number of people attending cultural activities (of which there was only a slight decrease -

    1.1% - in comparison to the previous year.36

                   El Teatro Juarez, located in downtown La Paz, managed and renovated by an organization

    of civil society. This theater house is 830 m2 (8,934 ft2) of which only 240 m2 (2,583 ft2) are

    dedicated to drama performances. The stage of the Teatro Juarez has 168.08 m2 (1,809 ft2) and

    the hall (40 m2 or 431 ft2)) and is used as an art gallery. The upper floor has a multiple use room

    that is 40 m2 (431 ft2). The hall increased in capacity to 350 people37 since July of 2004, thanks

         Information obtained in the Activity Briefs section of the archives of the Dept of Cultural Diffusion (Consulta 01).

       Interview with Martha Carmenza, Director of the Department of Cultural Diffusion de la UABAJA
    CALIFORNIA SUR. May 20, 2004.
       Atlas de Infraestructura Cultural. Op. Cit. 149
        Statistical annex of the 4º informe de Gobierno de Baja California Sur. 2002 (Consulted in the archives of ISC).
     to arrangements by the International Community Foundation (ICF) with the participation of the

     UABCS to import and install seats.

     Also, there are the following theater houses, about which we were unfortunately unable to

     obtain information, since they do not have regular performance activities:

        Teatro-Auditorio Ricardo Chato Covarrubias in the municipality of Comondú

        Teatro General Manuel Marques de León in Todos Santos, municipality of La Paz

        Teatro al Aire Libre (Outdoors theater) Profra. Rosaura Zapata Cano, located in La Paz city

         and under the custody of the ISC

        Teatro Prof. Manuel Torre Iglesias. Located in La Paz city, belonging to the Instituto

         Sudcaliforniano de la Juventud y el Deporte.

        Teatro de la Casa de la Cultura de Los Cabos, which does not have the basic equipment for

         theater productions. It is only used for some special events, such as folkloric dance

         workshops and closing events of summer courses.

                     Libraries

Libraries in Baja California Sur are of four kinds:

            Public

            School libraries

            Those belonging to higher education institutions, also public

            Public, specialized
             The total number of libraries in the state of Baja California Sur is fifty-one, holding a total

    of 413,649 books. With these figures we have a total of 8,314.5 inhabitants per library and a

    rate of 0.9 books per inhabitant.

        Public Libraries

             Libraries grouped as public are ascribed to the General Directorate of Libraries (under

    CONACULTA), which coordinates the functions of the National Network together with the

    State coordinating office of Public Libraries. The National Network of Public Libraries was

    founded in the year 1983 as a result of an agreement between the Secretary of Public Education

    and the governments of the states of the Federation, and in 1988 the General Law on Libraries

    was enacted. This Law is the legal framework for this Network.

             The National Network is made up of the State Public Libraries Network, which, in turn,

    manages state, regional, central or municipal libraries. Central public libraries act as functioning

    models of the other libraries managed by the networks. These libraries, including Baja California

    Sur‘s central library, were initially given 10,000 volumes.38 One library was founded in each

    capital city in Mexico.

             Presently, the Public Library National Network operates 6,610 libraries,39 of which only

    forty-five are in the state of Baja California Sur. The state is considered among those with the

    least number of libraries in the country, together with Quintana Roo (forty-seven), Colima

    (fifty-one) and Campeche (fifty-three).40

             The national mean of inhabitants per library is 14,748. Better-equipped states in terms of

    inhabitants per library are Tabasco (3,360), Zacatecas (6,415), Tlaxcala (7,826) and Oaxaca

       Atlas of Cultural Infrastructure, Op.Cit. p.84
       This figure does not include libraries belonging to higher education institutions.
       Atlas de Infraestructura Cultural , Op. Cit. p. 86.
(7,923). States with the largest number of inhabitants per library are Guanajuato (38,222), Baja

California (29,968), Tamaulipas (26,730) and Jalisco (26,563). This rate is, therefore, not related

to the extent of economic and social development of the states, nor with levels of schooling.

        With forty-five libraries in five municipalities, Baja California Sur has a mean of 10,096

inhabitants per library, 31% above the national mean.41 If we take into account the number of

inhabitants per library of the best and worst equipped states, Baja California Sur is in the

middle, much better that its neighbor, Baja California that is 103% below the national mean,

regarding number of inhabitants per library.

        Among the main functions of public libraries, reading promotion activities and book

collections are organized into four groups: general collection, reference collection, children‘s

collection, and periodicals collection.

        Of the forty-five public libraries existing in Baja California Sur that are managed by the

state network, there are fifteen in urban areas and thirty in rural ones. One of them is the

state‘s central public library ―Filemon C. Pineda,‖ established in the capital of the state to

provide library services to the community and act as model library. The Coordinating office of

the state libraries network uses this outpost to operate the other libraries of the agency.42 This

library was inaugurated on January 26th, 1987. During its initial operation it had approximately

9,401 volumes. Presently, it has 26,662 volumes.43 The other forty-four libraries are distributed

in the five municipalities of the state as follows in Graph 1:

   Idem, p.92
   Galván Gaytán, Columba. Historia de las Bibliotecas en Baja California Sur, CONACULTA, México, 1992.
   Interview with Lic. Hilda de la Cruz Fematt. May 27, 2004, 2:20 pm.
                              Graph 1
              Percentage of Libraries in Baja California
                        Sur by Municipality

                Los Cabos               Loreto
                                                              La Paz
                  17.8%                  2.2%


Source: elaborated by the author with information from the State Network of Public Libraries.

            The total number of volumes that existed amongst all the state‘s public libraries in the

year 2003 were 253,198. This number reveals an index of 0.59 books per inhabitant, higher than

the national average of 0.33 books per inhabitant.44 As Graph G-1 shows, the municipalities with

the most public libraries are La Paz and Comondú with thirteen each. La Paz has an index of

15,146 inhabitants per library (398 individuals above the state average) and Comondú has 4,912

people per library (9,836 below the state average). 61.5% of the total state population lives in

these two states.45 The municipality with the largest number of libraries is Mulegé, with ten

(4,598 people per library), Los Cabos with eight (13,183 people per library) and Loreto, which

only has one (11,812 people per library.).

           Public libraries‘ capacity and activities are not the same throughout the state. Tables 3

and Table 4 show how the communities used libraries in the years 2002-2003.

     Atlas de Infraestructura Cultural. Op. Cit. p. 54.
     Idem. p. 92.
  Table 3: Number of visitors in libraries, by semester in 2002.

Municipality      First semester   Second Semester   Accrued
Comondú           22,717           63,518            86,235
Mulegé            20,669           52,689            73,358
La Paz            85,375           165,368           250,743
Los Cabos         31,763           48,600            80,363
Loreto            2,990            5,518             8,508
B.C.S.            163,514          335,693           499,207
Source: Instituto Sudcaliforniano de Cultura

  Table 4: Number of visitors in public libraries, compared to years 2002 and 2003
          Municipality     2002              2003          Percentage
          Comondú          86,235            97,233        12.75%
            Mulegé                    73,358    55,265    -24.66%
            La Paz                    250,743   247,987   -1.09%
            Los Cabos                 80,363    105,601   31.405
            Loreto                    8,508     5,662     -33.45%
            B.C.S.                    499,207   511,748   2.51%
Souce; Estimates made by the author
                           Graph 2:
           Number of Activities to Promote Reading
            in BCS Libraries by Municipality in 2003

                 Among Children           Among Youth           Among Adults

   1600                    1,505
    800                            601
    400      259                                                      180
               110 89           99                             135
    200                                     15 8 15           79        2946











Source: Baja California Sur Public Libraries State Network.
         Of the total number of visitors in 2003, the following variations were found regarding

the use of different services provided by public libraries:

                                 Graph 3
            Change in Books Taken Out from Local Libraries by
                     Municipality from 2002 to 2003

                        % Change in Books from General Collection
                        % Change in Books from Children's Collection


                                                              1   8

   -20    Comondú
              -9            La Paz          Loreto       Los Cabos     Mulegé
                                    -41                                -42

Source: Baja California Sur Public Libraries State Network.

         In the year 2003, there is a regrettable drop in the total number of books consulted,

both in the general and the children‘s collection, compared to the amount reported in 2002.

The decrease in consultation of the general collection was 9.01% and 12.14% in the children‘s


         Those municipalities that showed a drop in the amount of consultations in 2003,

compared to 2002, are Mulegé with 42.44% in general collection and 25.71% in children‘s;

similarly in La Paz where consultation of the general collection went down 18.15%, while the

children‘s dropped 16.56%. Variations in the number of consultations in both collections are not

consistent. Thus, Comondú showed an increase of 17.64% in the number of consulted books in
the general collection and a slight decrease of 9.11% in the children‘s collection. Los Cabos

showed an increase of 0.99% in the general collection and 8.24% in the children‘s collection.

Loreto showed an increase of 55.06% in the general collection and a decrease of 57.26% in the

children‘s collection.

           One of the probable causes for the increase in book consultation in the municipality of

Comondú is the opening of a new library in early 2003. The number of users in this municipality

surpassed those reported in the same period in the municipality of Los Cabos, notwithstanding

the fact that the latter is the second most populous municipality in the state. Library coverage in

urban centers of Baja California Sur, as well as existence of cultural centers is adequate, but

there remains the challenge of many rural communities having neither a library nor access to

any existing library. Among additional or alternate services of the central library in La Paz city,

there is a children‘s room with capacity for eighty children that has five well-trained people in

charge of planning and implementing cultural promotion programs. It has 4,500 volumes and

special furniture (twenty tables and eighty chairs) .46 Among the programs that supplement book

lending in Public Libraries, there is the program entitled,―My Holidays in the Library,‖ directed

towards children from five municipalities who can attend workshops on writing, art, and

environmental education. In Baja California Sur, in 2003, 36,795 children and young people from

five municipalities were active in the program.47 Specific reading promotion activities and guided

tours are divided into three main target groups: children, teenagers ,and young people and

adults. The number of these reading promotion activities in 2003, by municipality, are as follows

in Table G-5:

     Interview with Lic. Hilda de la Cruz Fermatt.
     Government of the State of Baja California Sur, Report on the state of the administration.
                                Table 5: Reading promotion activities

                  Municipality         Children             Young            Adults            No. of
                                                            people                             attendants
                  Comondú              259                  110              89                16,624
                  La Paz               1,505                99               601               49,646
                  Loreto               15                   8                15                1,114
                  Los Cabos            347                  79               135               17,265
                  Mulegé               180                  29               46                6,919
                  Total Baja           2,306                325              886               91,568
Source: Instituto Sudcaliforniano de Cultura.48. State Library Network. 49

   Government of the State of Baja California Sur, Hacia Los Programas Sectoriales con Enfoque regional. BAJA
CALIFORNIA SUR, Secretaría de Desarrollo y Fomento Económico, Sep. 2001.p. 183
   Concentrados estadísticos 2003, from the files of the State Library Network
                                     Graph 4
                        Number of Participants in Reading
                       Promotion Activities by Municipalities
                                     in 2003

                                  16,624                         17,265
                 La Paz       Comondú          Mulegé        Los Cabos        Loreto

Source: Elaborated by the author with information from the Baja California Sur Public Library State Network.

        As shown in Graph 2, the largest number of activities to promote reading are targeted

towards children, thanks to the coordinated efforts of primary and secondary school teachers

during holidays and the Centers of Basic Education. The least number of activities to promote

reading is among young people—a concern that should be addressed. From the analysis of the

above tables and graphs, one can conclude that La Paz is the community that has the largest

number of reading promotion activities and the largest population to attend to (54% of the

state). This is due to the high concentration of population living in La Paz and Todos Santos and

to the fact that La Paz is one of the municipalities with the largest number of public libraries

(thirteen). Comondú has a smaller population but it also has thirteen libraries, hence it is not

surprising to see that it is second place (at 18%) in the state in the number of people involved in
reading promotion activities. It also explains why the municipality of Loreto shows little

participation in this kind of activity, since it only has one public library.

         A program was launched in 2001 in order to provide all public libraries in the National

Network with one computer station and free access to the Internet. Initially, this service was

considered only for central libraries, located in the capital cities of the states. In 2001, Baja

California Sur‘s central library was given equipment for five Internet computing stations, capable

of providing service to 2,986 users. In 2002, only 522 users were attended to because there

was a problem with the central server. In 2003, there were 1,519 users and at the beginning of

2004 another fifteen computers were added.50 During the second stage of the program, in early

2004 Cabo San Lucas‘ libraries were given three computer stations, San Jose del Cabo‘s was

given six and Ciudad Constitucion‘s received three. It would be beneficial to make an

assessment in the near future as to the acceptance and impact of the service provided by the

public libraries network in the state. In a subsequent stage, another six libraries are expected to

provide this service, and by late 2004 and early 2005 the state of Baja California Sur will have a

total of ten rooms with access to the Internet.51

         In summary, in 1999 the Network provided for a population of 356,435 users. By the

year 2003, the number of people serviced by these centers was 510,855 users—an increase of


         To support activities for the promotion of reading undertaken by public libraries, the

special Fund to Promote Reading in the state of Baja California Sur –whose annual budget is

   Interview with Lic. Hilda Alejandra de la Cruz Fematt, May 27, 2004, 2:20 pm
   Diagnosis of the various activities undertaken in the state of Baja California Sur, with the participation of
CONACULTA and the government of the state. CONACULTA-ISC, La Paz, Baja California, March 2004.
     $100,000 – carried the first module in February 2004 to train reading hall coordinators, and

     approved twenty-six reading hall projects. These halls are all located in social development

     centers of the DIF‗s System for Integral Family Development, located in neighborhoods in La

     Paz. There is no data about the population that has benefited from these reading halls.53

          Libraries belonging to higher education institutions

                  Higher education institutions (IES) in the state that have a library, research centers, and

     bibliographic collections include the Universidad Autonoma de Baja California Sur (UABCS), the

     Technological Institute of La Paz (ITLP), the Center of Biological Research of the North East

     (CIBNOR), the Interdisciplinary Center of Marine Science (CICIMAR), the Urban Teachers‘

     School, and the Higher Teachers‘ School of the State of Baja California Sur.

     Libraries at the UABCS have the following services:

a)                Internal and external consultation of bibliographic material (materials can be checked

     out for home use)

b)                Inter-library loans

c)                Newspaper library

d)                Map library

e)                Virtual library (Internet consultation)

f)                Study cubicles

g)                Printing and photocopying services

             The central library of the UABCS has 28,098 book titles and 64,931 volumes, 479 titles

     and 171,589 volumes of periodicals (journals and newspapers), 1,421 titles of thesis and 8,923

     maps and geographic charts.54 This library has Internet service and access to databases such as

     Oceano and E-Libro (this virtual library has more than 20,000 electronic volumes on different

     subjects, both in English and Spanish).

             The ITLP library is located in the information center that holds both the library and the

     consultation center of INEGI plus access to the Internet. Currently, the ITLP library has a

     collection of 9,529 titles and 35,350 issues. The map library has a total of 1,160 maps and

     geographical charts. This library has an average of eight copies per title, four titles per student

     and fourteen issues per student. The student population in 2003 at the ITLP was almost 6,000.55

     Services provided by this library both to internal and external populations are the following:

a)           Book consultation in-house and home loans

b)           Consultation of theses

c)           Newspaper library

d)           Map library

e)           Reference material (dictionaries, encyclopedias, and manuals)

f)           CD‘s and data base consultations

g)           Internet consultation

             In order to have access to Internet and to the Technological Virtual Library (BiViTec),

     ITLP is installing twenty computer stations. The total number of consultations in the year 2003

       Monthly statistics of services provided by the library of the UABCS August 20, 2004 .
       Interview with the head of the Information Centerat the ITLP, Carmen J. Angulo Chinchillas, August 31 st, 2004,
     11:00 a.m.
was 7,769; it should be noted that this figure does not represent the total number of users,

since it does not include the number of book consultations as there is no reliable system to

count users.56

           Mexico‘s national System of Technological Institutes (SNIT) established the

Technological Virtual Library (BiViTec) system as a support tool for learning processes in the

Institutes and Centers that are part of the System. Databases of comprehensive and reference

texts that make up the system have been chosen to cover all the areas of engineering, plus

technical-administrative ones that are offered as academic programs in the System. There is

access to forty databases, of which eight are complete text and thirty-two are references. The

contents of BiViTec includes works from more than 39,000 journals, as reference, 105

encyclopedias and dictionaries, and more than 100,000 international patents.57

           CIBNOR‘s library has 21,632 book titles and provides internal and external consultation.

Of these, 14,567 are specialized articles in different articles, 4,869 books, 527 maps, 629

specialized journals and 1,040 theses. Approximately 3,000 internal and 900 external uses are

recorded per year. There are six terminals for exclusive use and consultation of the library‘s

catalog. It is also possible to consult bibliographic catalogs via the Internet page dedicated to

library services. This library has six computing stations for Internet use.

           The book and newspaper collection of the CICIMAR library specializes in marine science

and related areas, such as oceanology, ecology, and aquaculture and is organized in six

collections. The journal collection is the largest one, it has 27,000 issues of scientific journals

corresponding to different universities and research centers in Europe, Asia, Africa, Central and

     http/ consultation, Sunday, May 23 rd ,2004, 02:13:58 p.m.
South America, the United States, and Canada, and from international organizations such as

UNESCO and FAO. Presently it has 100 titles. The book collection is made up of more than

4,000 volumes, especially on sea biology, ichthyology, ecology, statistics, and fisheries. The

offprint collection is formed from approximately 7,700 documents, among them those published

by CICIMAR, UABCS, CICESE and UABC researchers. The thesis collection is comprised

mainly of theses written by postgraduate students from CICIMAR, UABCS, CICESE, and UABC,

and there are more than 400 different titles. The map collection has 180 topographic charts,

scale 1:50 000, of the state of Baja California Sur. Books, journals and offprint that were part of

Dr. Reuben Lasker‘s private collection form the Lasker collection. The ―Reuben Lasker‖ library

serves all research, teaching, or service institutions with which it has entered bilateral

cooperation agreements. The main services it provides are internal and external consultation

(check-outs for home use), inter-library exchange, and consultation of databases via Internet.

The databases that may be consulted via Internet are Aquatic Sciences & Fisheries Abstracts

(ASFA), Biological Sciences Database and the Environmental Sciences & Pollution Management


           The Benemerita Escuela Normal Urbana (BENU) has in its library a collection made up

of 31,677 volumes. This collection is divided into a general collection, a specialized collection,

and a reference collection. The student community of BENU, the Baja California Sur Higher

Teacher‘s School, and the general population use all three collections. This library has internal

and external consultation services, home loans, and an electronic file to be consulted by

58 consultation, May 23rd, 2004, 02:40 p.m.
computer. There is no Internet service, nor a newspaper library with regular publications. The

library had 35,000 users in 2003.59

     Interview with Mr. Jose Luis Nuno Guido,, in charge of BENU’s library, on August, 31 st, 2004
           Bookstores and cultural publishing

            There was no information provided by administrative agencies, or information and

    publishing centers, creating a great challenge to obtain a clear, objective view of what is

    happening in this field. Apparently, the lack of information on bookstores is present not only in

    Baja California Sur. According to CONACULTA‘s reports, the lack of statistical information

    about bookstores is a national phenomenon that is reflected in the lack of knowledge about this

    sector throughout the country.60

            Regardless of the lack of documentation, one can recognize that bookstores are an

    instrumental factor in marketing books in the country. The system is made up of premises

    dedicated only to sell published goods (mainly books). This does not include shopping malls that

    have a small vending point for books, amid all the other products they sell.61 Besides large

    bookstores and exclusive establishments, in Mexico there also exist ―small book stores‖

    dedicated to selling books and text books for primary and secondary schools, stationary, gifts,

    etc. These are located mainly in urban residential centers.

            Specialized bookstores mainly sell religious, esoteric, medical, or applied sciences

    books.62 The records of the Cultural Information System show 1,146 bookstores across the

    country, of which eight are in Baja California Sur. The national mean of number of inhabitants

    per bookstore is 85,064. The best figures for Mexico City, 20,343 inhabitants per bookstore,

    then Querétaro with 48,424 inhabitants per bookstore, Baja California Sur with 53,005

       Atlas de la Infraestructura Cultural, p. 152
       This definition of bookstore is the one issued according to the criteria proposed by the Regional Center for the
    Promotion of Books in Latina America and the Caribbean (CERLALC), international organization created in August
    1984, quoted in the Atlas de Infraestructura Cultural, Op. Cit. Page 152.
       Atlas de la Infraestructura Cultural, Op. Cit. P. 152-153
inhabitants per bookstore, and Aguascalientes with 59,017 inhabitants per bookstore. The

worst figures, that is the states that have more inhabitants per bookstore, are Tlaxcala with

320,882 inhabitants per bookstore, Colima with 271,313 inhabitants per bookstore, Oaxaca

with 264,520 inhabitants per bookstore, and Chiapas with 217,827 inhabitants per bookstore.63

Only three municipalities have bookstores in Baja California Sur: La Paz, four, Los Cabos, three,

and Mulegé, one. The inhabitants per bookstore ratio in those municipalities is the following: La

Paz with 49,226 inhabitants per bookstore, Los Cabos with 35,156 inhabitants per bookstore,

and Mulegé with 45,989 inhabitants per bookstore.

           Although Baja California Sur is one of the four best-equipped states in the country

bookstores in terms of inhabitants per bookstore, this figure does not reveal the entire

situation in Baja California Sur. The high ranking is due more to the small population than to the

appropriate number of bookstores. Besides, the three municipalities that have bookstores have

82.1% of the total population in the state. Therefore, in order to attend to 82.1% of the total

population in the state, there are only eight medium or small bookstores.

           One of the most important roles of a bookstore is to promote access to books of

significance for education, particularly those needed in higher levels. But books are more

expensive in Baja California Sur than in the rest of the country, because one has to add the cost

of transportation to the actual cost of the item.

           To this date, there is only one institution whose efforts are geared to selling books at a

lower cost. This is the Patronato Sudcaliforniano that has a bookstore to help the student

sector. It would, therefore, be of great help to create a fund to establish affordable bookstores

     Idem. P.153
    across the state, even in remote communities, as well as a scholarship system that helps

    outstanding students buy the necessary books.

              Institutions with publishing services are the Instituto Sudcaliforniano de Cultura and the

    Autonomous University of Baja California Sur. The ISC has a state publishing program and the

    subprogram ―one book, one month.‖ This program co-published eleven titles in the year 2003

    with an investment of $191,545 USD. Of these eleven titles, two were about historic topics,

    three fiction, four poetry, one essay, and one human rights; it undertakes co-publishing works

    with other education and publishing entities, such as UABCS, Editorial Praxis, the Secretary of

    Education, La Paz‘ City Hall, UABC (University of Baja California) and the Seaport‘s Integral

    Administration, among others. The production of the current state publishing program has

    surpassed the results of the previous ones, because in 2001, only six titles were published, and

    in 2002, there were only two.64

             Music

              In Baja California Sur, the State School of Music offers a workshop of initiation to music,

    and formal courses of guitar, piano, double bass, trumpet, drums, french horn, violin, electronic

    bass, and viola. In the first semester of the year 2003, 441 students enrolled but 152 were

    dismissed. In the second semester of the same year, there were 217 enrolled students, of

    whom 214 remained active and three dropped out. Students of the State School of Music

    organize presentations and concerts across the state to promote and publicize the activities and

    quality of the school. In 2003, the following presentations were organized:

    64 Consultation, Sunday, May 23rd, 2004, 02:148 p.m.
                    Table 6: Presentations by the School of Music students

    Locality                             No. of presentations      Audience that attended
    Guerrero Negro                       1                         80
    Todos Santos                         2                         150
    El Triunfo                           1                         80
    La Paz                               72                        600
    Loreto                               1                         200
    Total                                77                        1,110
Source: Instituto Sudcaliforniano de Cultura

        The State School of Music is the seat of the Youth Orchestra of the state of Baja

California that, three years after its creation, was classified by the National System for the

Promotion of Music of CONACULTA, as the orchestra with the greatest growth in number of

performances in 2003. This resulted in nine children being chosen to be part of the National

Children and Youth Orchestra. Baja California Sur Youth Orchestra tours the whole state

giving concerts; in 2003, the following results were achieved:

         Table 7: Presentations of Baja California Sur Youth Orchestra in 2003

    Locality                            No. of presentations       Audience that attended
    Todos Santos                        2                          600
    El Triunfo                          1                          200
    San Antonio                         1                          170
    Los Barriles                        1                          100
    La Paz                              18                         15,000
       Cabo San Lucas                      2                                   500
       San José del Cabo                   2                                   800
       Santiago                            1                                   800
       Total                               29                                  17,570
           Source : Instituto Sudcaliforniano de Cultura

           One of the most important events for the Youth Orchestra is the Northwest Youth

Orchestra convention. In 2004, this event was held in La Paz with 140 talented youth. The

activities were mostly public, as well as two concerts on ―music in Mexico.‖ This event had

two positive consequences – bringing awareness of the youth orchestra to people in Baja

California Sur, as well as the importance of artistic expression for the youth of the state.65

           The State Unit of Folklore Cultures, in coordination with municipal governments,

organizes the 20th Century Song Festival of Baja California Sur. In the 2003 edition, there were

six awards given worth a total amount of $43,000 USD. This festival has a first elimination stage

at the municipal level; but unfortunately there are no records of participation at this stage.66

According to the ISC yearbook of musicians, there are fifty-eight musicians in the municipality of

La Paz, one in Guerrero Negro, one in Santa Rosalia, one in Ciudad Constitución, and two in

San Jose del Cabo (in addition to one duet and one trio).67 It is important to underscore that

this yearbook does not include the total number of musicians who live in the five municipalities

of the state; the list includes only those who provided their data on a voluntary basis. However,

considering this list as a sample, one may conclude that since the largest number of musicians

  Noticiero Panorama Informativo. Promomedios California. Conductor: Miguel Ángel Ojeda, (13-04-04). La Paz, BAJA
     Musicians Yearbook. From the Archives of the Instituto Sudcaliforniano de Cultura. Consulted August 4, 2004.
    are in La Paz city and La Paz municipality that people living there have the greatest chance to

    participate in cultural activities conducted by the ISC.

            The lack of data about musicians in the municipality of Loreto is remarkable, since this

    community has a strong tradition of musical performance and is representation of ranchera


            Most musicians are more interested in music as a source of income than as a means of

    cultural promotion.68

             In regards to civil society organizations specifically devoted to music in the state,

    examples include the Club Musicos Amigos, A.C., and the Asociación Filarmónica de La Paz

    (Philharmonic Association of La Paz). The Club Músicos Amigos organizes activities and musical

    performances to raise funds for the Museum of Music, as well as for musicians with limited

    income. However, their principle objective is to host events in Baja California Sur that

    contribute to popular musical education and familiarize the public to artistic expressions. La Paz‘

    Philharmonic Association works to best fulfill the needs of the Youth Philharmonic Orchestra.

    The principal need of this orchestra is to purchase musical instruments, which tend to be very

    expensive and unaffordable for young musicians. The Philharmonic Association also supports

    tours and presentations through assistance with transportation, accommodation and meals for

    young musicians, apart from uniforms and formal attire needed in some musical shows.69 These

    two societies are in constant need of support, either financial or volunteer, and their work

    shows serious commitment to the population of Baja California Sur.

       A large number of musicians work in bars, cafes, and restaurants as this is often more lucrative than teaching or
    cultural performance.
       Interview with the chairman of La Paz’ philharmonic society, Mr. Gustavo Francisco Silva Ledesma.
                   Theater Arts

           In Baja California Sur, there are several theater groups: Altaira, the IMSS theater

workshop, La Hostería, ―A Camanchi,‖ ―Cóndor,‖ La Prisa de Cronos, the Traveling Theater

(Teatro Itinerante), Colectivo Chunique, and La Raza. Each of these is made up of ten to twenty

people, mostly teenagers and young people. The number of participants varies depending on the

time of school year because most participants are students. Educational institutions that host

theater groups are UABCS, la Preparatoria Morelos (Morelos Senior High School), and Baja

California Sur‘s Escuela Normal Superior. The ISC has a roster of twenty-seven individuals who

are dedicated to the theater of whom only two are in the municipality of Los Cabos and the

rest live in La Paz city.70 As is the case with musicians, there are data only about people

dedicated to the theater who live in La Paz. The ISC has no information about those living in

other municipalities. In the year 2002, the ISC organized the State Theater Show, the Region‘s

Theater festival and the State‘s Theater Competition with the participation of eleven companies

in La Paz city. One of the main results of these events was to underscore the need to improve

organization amongst the participating companies. This led the ISC to arrange for training

courses geared towards cultural promoters and especially people dedicated to drama. As a

result, the courses shown in Table 8 were given in 2003:

     Theater Directory . Instituto Sudcaliforniano de la Cultura. Consulted on August, 4, 2004.
       Table 8: Training courses for cultural and theater promoters

     Name of the course             Modality            Hours              Participants
     Improvisation and              Workshop            15                 31
     ―From idea to action, from     Workshop            60                 40
     word to the stage‖
     Seminar on dramatic            Seminar             20                 35
     theory and playwright
                                    Total               95                 106
       Source: Instituto Sudcaliforniano de Cultura.

              Dance

       A variety of dance forms and activities have occurred in Baja California Sur in the last

few years. The most developed of these forms is Mexican folkloric dance, both as regional

dance and as a national symbol. Folkloric dancing is usually taught in elementary schools as part

of school festivals. In higher-level schools, dancing is taught more intensively and with improved

organization. Most senior high schools in the state have dance workshops. In higher education

institutions (Universities and the Technological Institutes) there are dance workshops, mainly

folkloric dancing, even though there is a very limited budget.

       The other dancing genres that are taught in the state are ballet, modern, Polynesian,

Hawaiian, Spanish, and Arab. These dance forms are mainly taught in private schools, and are

neither free nor open to the public; the same is true regarding their performances. Some

Cultural Houses and Centers in the state have workshops that teach the same genres, and
these are usually geared toward children and teenagers. Municipalities that offer these courses

are La Paz and Los Cabos, and La Paz has the majority of the Centers in the state that offer

such workshops. Nevertheless, since Los Cabos has more tourism inflow, Mexican folkloric

dance shows are more prevalent there than in La Paz.

      Baja California Sur has no comprehensive registry of dance teachers or dance schools, and

it is thus not possible to track the promotion, creation, and teaching of dance. The only registry

is a list of fifteen groups who belong to the Association of Dance Teachers of Baja

California Sur, A.C.,71 that annually organizes the Festival for the International Day of Dance in

the month of April.72 In addition to this festival, in October 2003 the national performance ―All

the Children Dance‖ took place with the support of CONACULTA. This event had the

objective of encouraging children to dance one Sunday in a public plaza from noon until three in

the afternoon. More than 200 children participated.73 Another important dance event in the

state was ―Dance the Sea‖, an event in which ISC organized five spectacles with dance

companies from the interior of Mexico and was attended by 1,800 spectators.74

                 Folk Art

         In order to stimulate the creative work of artists from Baja California Sur, the ISC held

the First Biennial Show of South Californian Painting ―Carlos Olachea.‖ Thirty-six artists

   Presently, this association has no legal record of existence. Official legal recognition ceased after problems with
the Board of Directors, but the gropu continues to uste the name for social identification. Interview with Rosa Maria
de Mendoza de Uribe, ex-president AMDBAJA CALIFORNIA SUR, A.C. June 20, 2004.
   Interview with Prof. Marco Antonio Jedi, organizer of the Festival for the International Day of Dance, May 9 th,
   Report on the variety of activities in Baja California Sur that have had the participation of the National Council
for Culture and the Arts and the State Government. CONACULTA-ISC, La Paz , BAJA CALIFORNIA SUR,
March 2004.
participated in this contest presenting fifty-seven works, of which twenty-five were selected to

be shown across the state.75

           As part of the activities of cultural promotion in folk arts, the state government initiated

a program called ―Manos a la Brocha‖ (Hands to the brush) through the ISC. This program was

mainly aimed at decorating two monumental banners, twenty-five meters in length (82 ft.) by

two meters width (6.6 ft.), with the participation of fifty children and more than twenty cultural

promoters. These were shown in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, during the Meeting of Promoters

of Children‘s Culture in the Northern Zone, under convocation of CONACULTA. One of

these two banners was chosen to travel across the country and to be exhibited in the Palace of

Fine Arts in Mexico City. The theme in the banners was a sample of cultural topics in each


           In November 2003, an ―Art Camp‖ was held for the second consecutive time, gathering

twenty-five South Californian artists in the mining town of El Triunfo to share their aesthetic

perspectives related to landscapes and sceneries. Painters, draftsmen, engravers and

photographers exhibited and marketed the results of this camp during the festivities of the

patron saint of El Triunfo.77

                 Indigenous Art – Artisan Handicrafts

           Culture in Baja California Sur is a mosaic made up of contributions from different native

ethnic groups: originally the guaycuras, pericues, and cochimies. Then later, during the

acculturation process, the Spaniards and mestizos. Also, seris, yaquis, and mayos from the

   Press bulletin, November 28th, 2003. Boletines Informativos Originales, año 2003(ISC).
mainland coast have settled in the peninsula, attracted by pearl fishing and mining. Also, groups

from Asia and Europe came to live in the area during the times of natural resources

exploitation, primarily metal ores.

         Currently there are many foreigners living in the state, with a variety of interests that

influences the local culture.

         Unfortunately, there are no ethnic groups in the state that are identified as direct heirs

of the ancient native Indians that existed before the arrival of the Spaniards. The acculturation

process initiated by the Jesuits unfortunately resulted in epidemics and the disintegration of

much of these groups‘ cultural heritage.78

         This is primarily why Baja California Sur has no handicraft traditions that may be defined

as native. However, there does exist a deeply rooted craft tradition originating from ranch

owners in Baja California Sur.

         The ranch culture absorbed Western forms of subsistence, as well as the lifestyles and

ways of the ancient people of Baja California Sur. This synthesis resulted in residents‘ use of

resources provided by the environment. They created leather pieces, wicker works (mainly

palm), rudimentary pottery, and the use of regional woods (palo de arco, choya, pitaya, cardon,

palo fierro, palo adan, palma, etc.). In order to make the best use of available materials and to

decrease waste, various other elements were integrated in the manufacture of crafts, among

them: bovine bones and horns, remains of animal hide, stones, sand, coral, conch shell, abalone,

clams and mother of pearl. Currently, the government sector and several civil organizations are

in charge of dissemination, preservation, and recovery of crafts in Baja California Sur. The

  Maxhieux Susana, Hambleton Enrique (coord.) Diagnóstico Ambiental de Baja California Sur, Sociedad de Historia Natural
Niparajá- UABAJA CALIFORNIA SUR- Fundación Mexicana para la Educación Ambiental, México, 1998, P. 13
Bureau of the Secretary of Economic Promotion and Development manages the program to

promote crafts, with an aim to encourage crafts manufacturing as an alternative economic

activity, mainly in remote communities through training courses in manufacturing techniques

and ways to open marketing avenues that aim at making crafts a feasible means of community

development.79 This program has a register of 451 craftsmen from the five state municipalities:

thirty-eight in Los Cabos, 242 in La Paz, sixty-five in Comondú, twenty-one in Loreto, and

eighty-eight in Mulegé. Of these, sixty-nine are silversmiths, seventy-one work with sea shells,

thirty-three specialize in tin and embossing, twenty-nine in stone engraving, forty-five in leather

work, eighty-nine in regional woodwork, four in textiles, fifty-four in palm and fifty-six in new


        In order to help market the crafts produced, the government of the state, together with

the Association of South Californian Craftsmen, created the House of the South Californian

Craftsmen on March 8th, 2003, whose role is to bring the crafted products closer to the

potential consumer. By the month of July 2004, this marketing house had received items from

220 craftsmen from all five municipalities, including twenty inmates of the center of social re-

adaptation in La Paz city and Ciudad Constitución. In the month of July 2004 alone, a total of

2,256 items were sold with a total price of $144,124 USD.81 The demand for crafts in the

   Interview with Mr. Jose Luis Aranda de Luque, Coordinator of the Program in Support of Handi-Crafts, May, 9
   Information obtained from the registry of craftsmen:Padrón de Artesanos del Estado de Baja California Sur,
México, 2004. From the archives of the Directorate of Investment Promotion. State Government of BAJA
CALIFORNIA SUR. Consulted May 19, 2004.

  Interview with Dora Grimalda Burgoín, manager of the House of South Californian craftsman, September 20,
House of the Craftsman varies during the year. Highest sales are reported in the months of

February and March, and July and August, which are holiday months.

                Festivals and Traditional Festivities

        In Baja California Sur there are thirty-nine festivals and holidays, distributed among the

five municipalities as follows: Mulegé, seven celebrations/festivals and one carnival; Loreto: four

celebrations/festivals and one carnival; La Paz: nine celebrations/festivals and one carnival; Los

Cabos: six celebrations/festivals and one carnival.82 Of these celebrations and festivals, the most

important ones by regions in the states are:

                Festivals of the Gray Whale held in Guerrero Negro, Puerto Adolfo Lopez

Mateos, and Puerto San Carlos. These attract a big inflow of tourists, both national and foreign.

These festivals are enriched by principle artistic expressions from the northern part of the

state: music, dance, food, and activities that integrate the whale theme into the community.

                Art Festival in Todos Santos, La Paz municipality, held during the first week of

February. This festival gathers renowned artists from Mexico and abroad. In the 2003 Festival,

the ISC organized seven activities: two theater performances, one animation exhibition, one

documentary, one musical concert, and two lectures. 1,000 people in total attended these

events.83 There was a festival of Latino cinema with movies from Mexico, Argentina and Cuba.

  Archives of the State Unit on Popular and Indigenous Cultures, ISC, Popular Festival File consulted August, 2

  Government of the State of Baja California Sur, Annual report of progress made in services: Culture Sector,
Instituto Sudcaliforniano de Cultura. 2004.
Among the documentaries shown were Oasis Marino, Golfo de California, and other shorts about

past art festivals and carnivals in La Paz.84

                 Carnival and festivities to commemorate the founding of La Paz city: an occasion

for artists, writers, lecturers and orchestras to offer high quality shows. In the La Paz carnival,

there are many expressions of folkloric culture such as dances, ―palenques,‖ horse racing,

parades, folkloric dance performances, as well as local and national musical performers.

                 In the South, the two most important festivals are the Patron Saint Celebrations

in San Jose del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas. There are cultural programs, musical composition

contests, and other special events.

                 One event that has recently fostered the dissemination of the history and culture

of the state was the meeting of chronicle writers that took place in San Jose del Cabo. In this

meeting, chroniclers from the five municipalities and the state met and, among other things,

spoke about the expansion of journals throughout Baja California Sur.

                 Related to Missions, there are two celebrations in the municipality of Loreto: the

Missions Festival and the celebration to commemorate the founding of Loreto city. In the

former, there are lectures by researchers and writers about the Missions. There are also art

shows and baroque and religious music performances reminiscent of the music that was taught

by missionaries upon their arrival to the area. These concerts take place in the buildings of the

Missions of Loreto and San Javier, and therefore attract a large attendance.85

   Press Release, “From February 1st to 8th, Art Festival in Todos Santos, Baja California Sur. Original folder of
information bulletins. Archivo of the ISC.
   Interview with Prof. Guillermo del Valle, in charge of the State Unit for folklore and indigenous cultures, August
8, 2005.
         The ISC participates in the organization, promotion and funding of some of the cultural

festivals that take place in the state. In the year 2003, it helped organize the festivals shown in

Table 9:

                   Table 9: Cultural Festivals in Baja California Sur in 2003

      Name                                         Resources granted        No. of
      Festival Amar la Danza (Dance)               $70,000                  1709
      Festival del Dia de Muertos (Day of the $20,000                       3000
      Festival de la ballena gris (Gray whale)     $50,000                  2128
      Concert by the B.C. orchestra                $119,376                 2000
      Festival of San Jose del Cabo                $25,000                  1000
      Festival for the founding of La Paz          $750,000                 6000
      Festival of Todos Santos                     $43,200                  1700
      Whale Festival (Puerto Lopez Mateos)         $15,600                  1500
      XXIV Anniversary of AHPLM                    $25,626                  350
      Presentation of the National Dance           $34,000                  1062
      Total                                        $1,152,800               20,449
Source : Instituto Sudcaliforniano de la Cultura

         It is important to clarify that the amounts spent by the ISC do not cover the total costs

of the festivals, but only part of it, since festivals are organized and supported by non- profit

organizations, the Office of Festivals in La Paz city, and the Directorates of Culture in the five

municipalities. From 1999 to 2003 there has been an increase in investment for cultural festivals,

as can be seen in Table 10.
                  Table 10: Investment in Baja California Sur Festivals, 1999-2003

          Year           Amount spent                     No. of attendants
          1999           $18,000                          300
          2000           $38,000                          2,300
          2001           $655,000                         23,100
          2002           $1,287,050                       22,469
          2003           $1,152,802                       20,449
          TOTAL          $3,150,852                       68,618
    Source: Instituto Sudacliforniano de la Cultura

             As seen in the above table, the amount spent on festivals by the ISC has been increasing

    every year, except in 2003 when it decreased slightly.

                Public Art

             Public art is usually present in festivals, founding celebrations, carnivals, and patron saint

    festivities. During these events people have access to view exhibits by artists who are mostly

    from the region. Common in these spaces are outdoor presentations of art pieces, different

    genres of music, folkloric, and other dance groups including Hawaiian, Polynesian, or Tahitian.

             Public sculpture art, had not been promoted by the state government prior to the

    recent pier beautification program in La Paz city. This project included placing several sculptures

    along the Paseo Alvaro Obregón. Aside from the fact that this project is important for

    promoting public art, local artists have not welcomed it. They are not pleased with the way it
    has prioritized funding for works by local artists. The artists‘ opinions underscore the manner in

    which the state has selected the sculptures considering the broad range of artists in the area.86

                  Popular Culture

               Popular culture is defined as

    ―the set of creations from a cultural community, founded on tradition and expressed by a group
    or by individuals, and that respond to the community‘s expectations of cultural and social
    identity; norms and values are conveyed orally, by imitation or other ways. Its forms include,
    among others, language, music, dance, games, mythology, rites, customs, crafts, architecture and
    other arts.‖87

    Guided by the need to give a general idea of popular culture in Baja California Sur, we will focus

    on the elements of the quoted definition that are not included in other parts of this document:

                       Respect for language

               The current linguistic configuration in the state has three significant features. First, the

    loss of native languages of the groups living in the region (Cochimies, Guaycura, and Pericues)

    upon the arrival of the conquistadors. Epidemics and missionary culture greatly altered the

    linguistic make up as European control of the peninsula resulted in the decimation of the native

    population, along with its culture and language. The ranch society either had no chance to

    incorporate former linguistic forms, or there is no register of it ever having occurred. Second,

    in modern times the linguistic complex was woven with input from frequent migrations. Thus,

    the influence of French, English, and languages from China and Korea is strong. The third

    characteristic is the fact that migration patterns in the last decades have pulled labor for

         Interview with Efrén Odalde, author of “La Paloma de la Paz”, August 2004.
         See, “UNESCO and immaterial heritage” in Oralidad, to the rescue of
agriculture and construction from various states in the south of Mexico. Thus, several pre-

Columbian languages, especially from Oaxaca and Guerrero, are now in use in the state.

         The presence of gambling in the state is closely linked to traditional festivals and patron

saint celebrations in the communities. These include horse racing and rooster fights. Beginning

in the 1960s, car and bike racing became popular via the influence of northern Baja California.

The biggest race, known as the ―Off Road,‖ assembles neighboring communities along the road

throughout a large portion of the Baja peninsula, allowing for fun and interaction for those fond

of gambling and sport.88

         Although the topic of dance expressions is dealt with previously in this chapter, it is

important to mention the presence of regional dances created and done by inhabitants of Baja

California Sur. Among the most important dances, and as evidence of the cultural wealth of the

state, are ―la Danza de los cañeros‖ and ―La Flor de la Pitahaya.‖ Both are considered to be

expressions of the ingenuity, sensitivity, and talent of Baja California Sur artists. Accordingly, it

is worth mentioning that Baja California Sur residents have a special taste for folklore dances

that is closely linked to traditional and popular celebrations. Community committees organize

these dances where people enjoy music played by regional and nationally recognized bands,

particularly ―norteño bands‖ and bands from Sinaloa.

         Regional folk music comes through the mix of expressions from several influences and

tastes that have come to the area with each socio-cultural group. The young, urban population

is fond of such different genres as Cuban ballad and the recently adopted ―ska.‖ Rural

communities have adopted ―norteño‖ songs that have become part of the tradition and given rise

to the new genre, known as ―ranchera‖ music.89

       Myths and legends are not absent from Baja California Sur folklore. The general feature

of local folklore expression is the relationship of the communities with their environment.

Hence, legends involving the sea, the desert, and, in general, the surrounding geography of the

community are most frequent.

      The Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) tradition has been adopted in the state, as a

result of the influence of migrants coming from the states of Oaxaca and Guerrero. On

November 1st and 2nd each year, Dia de los Muertos activities take place that range from shows,

lectures and workshops to the very popular ―Altar for the Dead‖ contests. These activities have

promoted knowledge, dissemination, and research among locals about this celebration that

dates back to pre-Colonial times. Approximately 90% of education institutions across the state

undertake some kind of Dia de los Muertos activity. One of the most important contests is

organized by the UABCS, and in the year 2003 had the participation of thirty groups made up of

fifty to seventy students each. This contest impacts the entire university community, which in

2004 consisted of around 5,000 students. The ISC also organizes a Dia de los Muertos Festival

with the participation of 3,000 people. The festival hosted an Altar for the Dead contest, with

twenty-two contestants, the ―Guelaguetza‖ show coming from the state of Oaxaca, and the

presentation of a well-known Mexican folklore singer.90

   The name “ranchera”music is used, because that is how people in the ranches call it, not
necessarily because it refers to “música ranchera” as such.
                  Route of Missions

           The Society of Jesus founded fifteen missions in the territory that is now Baja California

    Sur. Each mission consisted of churches, chapels, and other buildings where clergymen and lay

    people lived. This system of architectural complexes is one of the main cultural heritages in the

    state and in the whole peninsula. The first mission was Nuestra Señora de Loreto Concho,

    founded in 1697 by father Juan Maria de Salvatierra.91 Accordingly, Loreto is considered to be

    the municipality with the most important historical heritage in the state.

           Missions established in the Californias generated a set of economic and cultural activities

    that are now expressed through a cultural heritage and a way of life that is in need of

    rehabilitation. This heritage includes geographic aspects, archeological sites, handwritten

    documents, painting, sculptures, original plans, crafts, fruits, and vegetables growth, livestock

    ranch exploitation, as well as an intangible heritage including beliefs, oral traditions, and religious

    festivities.92 Two main institutions safeguard this cultural heritage: the Coordinating Office of

    the State Program Route of the Missions (CPERM) and INAH, both federal institutions. CPERM

    is ascribed to the State Coordinating Office of Social Welfare Programs. This program was

    launched in order to plan, together with the Secretary for Tourism, the promotion of tourism

    for architectural and cultural sites in the old Jesuit missions, by creating a corridor called the

    ―Route of the Missions.‖

           The activities organized by this Coordinating Office include baroque music concerts,

    plastic art workshops with a mission theme, and the publication of books and education

       Government of the State of Baja California Sur. Directorate of Planning. Regional
    Development Programs in 2001. La Paz, Baja California Sur, p.20
       Government of the State of Baja California Sur. Directorate of Planning. Regional
    Development Programs 1999-2005.
material for children in basic and special education programs. The Office has a traveling photo

exhibition of mission buildings, one iconographic show of ―Women in Ancient California‖ and

the show of works done in plastic arts workshops by children from marginalized


       The general program of the Coordinating Office includes activities focused on the

sustainable development of the communities that still exist and were under the direct influence

of the mission complexes. However, due to the small operational capability and low budget, it

has been very difficult to reach isolated communities in order to include them in these

alternative tourism projects.

       The public response to these programs has been positive, t and the three exhibitions on

Women in Ancient California have had 600 children visit, and concerts and conferences with up

to 400 people in attendance. Approximately thirty children attend the plastic arts workshops

each summer.

       Publications and teaching materials issued in 2003 by the Coordinating Office of the

Route of the Missions included: ―Memoria de Colores de Baja California Sur,‖ [Color Memories of

Baja California Sur], a coloring book for handicapped children who may or may not need special

education, and ―Ruta de Misiones: Historia de una entrega,‖ [Route of Missions: History of a

Commitment], a spoken book, written also in the Braille system. Additionally, the Office

produced information videotape, in English and Spanish entitled ―Ruta de las Misiones‖ 93 [Route

of the Missions] that includes photographs and texts by Miguel Mathes, in collaboration with the

  Government of the State of Baja California Sur, V Report on the state of the administration
2003-2004, Lic. Leonel Cota Montaño (Socioeconomic document, Vol. I), p. 43
State Tourism Trust and the State Coordinating Office for Tourism Promotion in Baja

California Sur94.

          The State Fund for Culture and the Arts, managed by the South Californian Institute for

Culture, gave support to the Baja California Sur Missions-related projects shown in Table 11.

      Table 11: Funded projects in order to contribute to the Route of the Missions

      Year       Project                              Expected product                       Amount
      2000       Baja California Sur en               Four piano concerts in four            $24,000/
                 concierto                            different missions.                    US$2,270
                 Internet site of the Missions in     A web page with historic               $25,000/
                 Baja California Sur95                information, photographs.              US$2,365
      2001       Audio book for children              Publication of CDs telling stories     $55,000/
                 telling the story of the             about the missions; 1,000 copies.      US$5,203
                 Book in Braille about the            Publication of 1,000 copies of the     $45,000/
                 history of the missions for          book in the Braille system.            US$4,257
      2002       ―Testamentos del Sol‖                Poetry book, including 45 poems        $37,200/
                 [Testament of the Sun]               about the rebellion of Californians    US$3,519
                                                      in the year 1743.
                 ―Una Mirada a Baja California        Internet Multimedia page including     $37,000/
                 Sur‖ [A view of Baja                 photographs, historic data and         US$3,500
                 California Sur]                      reports of history publications. It
                                                      includes a map of the Route of the
                 Internet page with cartoons          Interactive page in Internet about     $37,000/
                 about the Missions                   the missions in Baja California Sur,   US$3,500
                                                      for children, including historic
                                                      data, photographs and cartoons.
      2003       Stories about Baja California        Three stories about Baja California    $30,000/
                 Sur                                  Sur in different times.                US$2,838

  La Ruta de las Misiones, Fideicomiso Estatal de Turismo – CEPTUA BAJA CALIFORNIA
SUR, Baja California Sur, México.
                    Esthetic and historical analysis       Ten paintings in watercolor and      $30,000/
                    of buildings in La Paz and             acrylic with images of the buildings US$2,838
                    proposals for their                    eligible for restoration.
                    restoration and use.
                    ―Ruta de las Misiones:                 A CD documentary including               $30,000/
                    laberinto del tiempo‖ [Route           historical and graphic information       US$2,838
                    of the Missions: Time                  about the missions of Baja
                    labyrinth]                             California Sur.

             Source: Instituto Sudcaliforniano de la Cultura

             According to reports by INAH, the mission buildings are currently at different stages in

     the conservation project, as described in the following list:

a)           Churches in good conditions and working production center: San Ignacio de

     Kadakaaman, San Jose de Comondú, San Luis Gonzaga Chiriyaqui, Santiago de los Coras, San

     Javier Vigge Biando.

b)           Churches in excellent condition, with no production center: San Jose del Cabo Añuiti,

     Nuestra Señora de Loreto, Nuestra Señora del Pilar de La Paz.

c)           Churches in good condition and about to lose their production center: Santa Rosalia de

     Mulegé, Santa Rosa de Todos Santos.

d)           Missions and mission sites where there is no building or production center: Santa Señora

     de los Dolores and San Bruno.

e)           Missions and mission sites where there is no building, but there is a production center:

     La Purísima Concepción de Cadegomo.96

       Government of the state of Baja California Sur, Planning Directorate. Programas de Desarrollo Regional 2001
     [Regional Development Programs] , La Paz, Baja California Sur, p. 20
           Challenges for the Route of the Missions Program are mainly financial. The annual

    budget allotted to it by the Directorate of Social Welfare of the Government of the state is not

    enough to implement those projects aimed at the rescue and cultural promotion of

    communities near the historic and mission sites. The loss of some historic monuments has,

    regrettably, already occurred. The main goals of the program include the restoration of mission

    architectural complexes and works of art that date back to the seventeenth century. According

    to reports by the state government, the most urgent needs in this area are:

          Thorough restoration of altarpieces in the San Javier mission.

          Thorough restoration of the San Javier church, as well as recovery of immediate


          Recovery of the original site ruins of the mission.

          Conservation of the visit towns for the presentation and Santa Rosalillita.

          Restoration of the archeological site of Cueva Pintas.

          Elaboration of the catalog of archeological sites in the San Javier mission.

          Classification of the archives of the Loreto Municipality.

          Rescue and study of the remains of Jesuit missionary, Juan de Ugarte.

          Restoration of the mission building in Mulegé and dissemination of the cultural wealth of

    the immediate environs in the community.
    2.       Problems in Art and Culture

        Museums

             One of the main challenges for the cultural service of Museums in Baja California Sur is a

    lack of financial resources for the conservation, restoration, and acquisition of collections and

    individual pieces. The regular occurrence of hurricanes has caused severe damage to buildings

    housing the museums, resulting in the loss of some very significant collections in the state. The

    distance between the communities and museum locations makes it difficult for the public to

    reach them. A program for the diffusion and extension of this service to these 1,569

    communities is needed.97

             The museums system, under INAH, does not encompass all the state anthropology and

    history museums. Such is the case for Todos Santos and Cabo San Lucas, which, because of this,

    do not get any technical, administrative, or financial support. As a result, the collections in these

    museums grow very slowly and there are no projects to do research about the pieces they


        Cultural Houses and Culture Centers

             Although it appears that CONACULTA‘s support of Baja California Sur‘s culture houses

    and culture centers is adequate, the reality is less positive. As is the case with museums, the

    main problem for cultural houses and culture centers is that they cannot render their services

    to distant communities. Scarce financial resources received from government agencies are

      Government of the state of Baja California Sur, Programa Estratégico de Ordenamiento
    Territorial [Strategic Program of territorial management] (PEOT), preliminary digital version,
    insufficient for cultural programs or art classes that help with the development, dissemination,

    and recovery of artistic expressions among this sector of the population. Additionally, there is

    not enough personnel or sufficient training. Low wages and a lack of incentives discourage

    promoters from learning for themselves.

           Culture houses and centers have poor infrastructures and unfavorable conditions for the

    teaching of quality artistic expression. Often it has been necessary to use less-than-desirable

    spaces for art workshops.

          Art Galleries

           The lack of information on art galleries in the state does not allow for a judgment about

    the social impact of this cultural asset. Hence, there is a need for list of gallery locations. Along

    with this effort, owners of art galleries that sell works of art must be made aware of the

    significance of the information they give to potential buyers. According to experts and art and

    culture promoters, one of the main problems in the field of art galleries is the lack of an

    educated public, due mainly to the lack of art education among children and young people,

    together with a lack of interest on the part of parents.

                  Theater Houses

           Problems pertaining to theater houses in the state go beyond the existence of officially

    recognized buildings. Interest in theater by the general public in Baja California Sur is lacking,

    mainly due to the absence of a regulatory and promotional agency that can give financial support

    to people interested in related activities. Theater productions are generally quite expensive to
execute, which adds to the problems with a lack of training on the part of performers and

executioners. Accordingly, the general population shows little interest in the theater.

              Libraries

       The main problem facing libraries is the lack of space available for the large number of

users, which has increased in the last few years. Most libraries are still functioning in their

original buildings that were erected when demand for library services was scarce. The small

budget they are allotted and the lack of a State Directorate for Libraries to manage government

resources directly results in deferral of all projects aimed at improving service.

       Children in Baja California Sur do not have enough spaces to initiate reading activities,

such as toy libraries or children‘s rooms with adequate facilities.

       Most libraries in the Public Libraries Network do not have computers with access to the

Internet. And, unfortunately, the national program for informatics equipment has been

postponed because of a lack of resources and a lack of attention to the Network.

              Bookstores

       One of the most important functions of a library is to make reference and study books

available to students, particularly at higher levels. However, the high cost of bibliographic

materials, increased by the cost of importation to the Peninsula, make it difficult for students to

purchase the books they need and, therefore, bookstores are not in abundance. Currently, only

a single institution in the state is devoted to selling books at prices below commercial ones: the

Patronato Sudcaliforniano, (South Californian Fund) which owns one book store to help
students. Worth mention is the fact that there is no NGO devoted to helping bookstores be

able to provide books at lower prices, or to create a fund to set up bookstores that sell new or

used books at lower prices. Neither is there a network of national and international donations

to provide help to outstanding students and students from remote communities.

              Music

       The ISC, the government agency that oversees art diffusion, has not had the financial or

operational capacity to create a registry of general data of musical promoters, creators,

interpreters, and representatives.

       The presence of different cultural groups, due to migration from other parts of the

country to the Peninsula, has given rise to a wealth of different musical genres. In order to

know and evaluate this intangible heritage, it is necessary to implement culture recovery

projects to revive or prevent the death of the musical wealth found in the communities.

Younger generations have no sense of this portion of their cultural heritage and history, a

problem that is likely to lead to the loss of an important part of their culture.

       There is no formal musical education in rural communities. The lack of promoters and

local art education centers combined with the small capacity of cultural bureaus has made this

problem more and more evident as communities have increased in size.

It has been very difficult to obtain resources to keep up the activities of the Youth Philharmonic

Orchestra of the state of Baja California Sur; ISC does not have enough resources to cover the

high expenses associated with this and similar classical music projects in the state. Customs

procedures have hindered the reception of donations and purchases of musical instruments,
directly affecting both the development of the orchestra as well as the diffusion of interest in

classical music.

     Theatrical activity

        The presence and concentration of most theater groups in La Paz, combined with high

production costs, have not permitted the extension of drama performances to other

municipalities, particularly to remote communities. In Baja California Sur, there is no financing of

theater production, and scholarships granted by ISC are insufficient for the diffusion of drama.

There is no school of dramatic art in the state that may help improve the quality both of acting

and productions.

                  Dance

        The state does not have a complete roster of dance teachers or dance schools and it is

therefore impossible to entirely know and understand the efforts being made by agents working

in the diffusion, creation, and teaching of dance. One of the most serious problems is the lack of

a school or university program offering formal education in dance or dance instruction. The lack

of high quality teachers in basic education schools is mainly due to the high cost of moving

outside the state to receive a basic dance education.

        The lack of formal dance programs has resulted in an attitude by the general population

of not considering art education in general, and dance in particular, as an important part of child

development. Dancing and dance instruction is still considered a simple hobby or secondary

              Folk Arts

       The main problem in this area is the lack of teaching programs for plastic arts in primary

and secondary education institutions. Art workshops given in school do not include this

discipline because there are not enough teachers or resources. The former is due mainly to the

fact that there is no advanced school of art. None of the state universities include art education

as a major degree option. There are no agreements between the Secretary of Public Education

and cultural agencies of the state government, and this has prevented any joint efforts to

implement art education programs in basic education schools. Cultural houses and centers that

have plastic arts workshops are mostly found in La Paz; however, there are none in the other

municipalities and this has resulted in a lack of interest on the part of students.

              Artisan Handicrafts

       Although appropriate actions have been undertaken to strengthen and promote the

growth of crafts manufacturing, the sector still has many problems that hinder it from achieving

its true potential. Upon closer consideration, it becomes clear that the distance between

craftsmen and the consumer market is a problem in need of urgent attention. One solution

could be to open more marketing centers located in tourist locations.

       In order to guarantee the competitive quality of crafts, it is necessary to optimize

production processes by implementing training programs in the villages where craftsmen reside.

Craftsmen in Baja California Sur do not have marketing avenues abroad because of the high

production cost of exporting the goods, the lack of opportunities to raise the level of regional
crafts to international standards, and the problems to overcome customs barriers. Since there

is no permanent consumer, craftsmen are dedicated exclusively to crafts manufacture. This

results in inconsistent production. In order to make people aware of the value of regional crafts,

it would be helpful to organize competitions, both municipal and state, and promote the

participation of craftsmen in national competitions.

              Festivals

       Because of a lack of resources, many local groups cannot participate in festivals. Often,

organizing committees do not have the resources to pay for transportation, meals, or

production in general of the shows for these festivals. The majority of the public prefers folk

culture shows (mass dances, rooster fights, horse racing, etc.), which weakens the efforts for

diffusion of more formal cultural expressions. Selling alcoholic drinks in most regional festivals

and ―fiestas‖ also weakens the interest of the public sector in cultural shows.

              Public Art

       There is the need to further promote public art, particularly in the municipalities that

have the areas of stone engraving and monumental cave paintings. This heritage is not being

enjoyed by the society of the state, who has not appreciated the world known works of art. No

project has been formulated to incorporate this cultural heritage in the education and tourism

sectors. Visits to the area are still not regulated and are restricted due to a lack of surveillance,

because there is no infrastructure for mass access to the sites without causing damage to

paintings and stone engravings.
       Inside the 21st Century Cultural Center, located in Todos Santos, there are two murals

dating back to the middle of the nineteenth century. These murals are still waiting for

restoration, but there are no funds for their rescue.

       Diffusion of public art in the state of Baja California Sur is almost non-existent; there are

extraordinary murals and sculptures still virtually unknown to the public at large.

                Folk Culture

       Consumption of alcoholic beverages is usually linked to folk culture expressions, which

can become a serious problem. During most of these events there is an indiscriminate sale of

alcoholic beverages, both to adults and minors, by brewing companies who are in charge of

organizing the events during patron saint festivities or festivals, and who extensively advertise

alcoholic beverage consumption. To a large extent, this situation is due to the monopoly held

by large brewing corporations in the organization of traditional dances and festivities.

       The other problem related to regional expressions of folk culture is the high impact on

the environment due to off-roading in areas crossed by car and motorbike races, in addition to

the large amounts of water being used to irrigate racetracks for the Off Road event.

                Route of the Missions

       The Route of the Missions program suffers from a lack of financial resources. The annual

budget from the State Government Directorate for Social Welfare is not enough to implement

projects to recover and promote cultural diffusion in communities neighboring historical and

mission sites.
             The loss of some historical monuments has been a regrettable result of the lack of

    financial resources in government agencies to implement projects for the recovery and publicity

    of the sites‘ historical value.

             It has of yet not been possible to implement the projects needed to link cultural tourism

    to communities neighboring cultural sites. This is mainly due to the lack of cooperation between

    economic development planning agencies and those agencies in charge of safeguarding

    architectural sites in the mission system.

             3. Problem solution capacity

                      3.1 Government response and joint ventures

                      In Baja California Sur, CONACULTA holds most of the responsibility for

    coordinating cultural activities, and does so by enlisting the efforts of the three levels of

    government (federal, state, and municipal). In the present state administration, the strategy is to

    create participatory financial funds98 that allow for the availability and better management of

    resources for cultural projects. This strategy is similar to the one followed in other parts of the

    country. The funds and their functions are as follows:

        State Fund for Culture and the Arts

                      At the beginning of the present state government administration (1999) the fund

    had $405,000 pesos ($37,564 USD) and increased 68% by 2003 to grant scholarships for

       Mainly federal and state resources create these funds, municipal participation is usually based on materials and
    logistics, and financial contribution from the municipality depends on the kind of activity or cultural promotion to
    which funds are destined. By and large, municipalities receive the benefits from federal and state funds.
cultural creation and diffusion. In that same year, twenty incentives to artistic creation were

given, the total amount being $681,800 pesos ($63,238 USD). In 2001, sixteen scholarships

were granted, nineteen in 2002, twenty in 2003 and fifteen in 200499.

        *Programs to support Municipal and Community Culture (Pacmyc)

        This federal program has shown gradual increments, since in 1991 only five cultural

development projects received assistance in the amount of $125,000 USD, while in 2003,

fourteen projects received assistance in an amount of $313,000 USD, which is 180%

increment.100 The goals of this program are, by and large, to encourage the research, diffusion,

and recovery of cultural wealth in the municipalities and communities, which did not have any

direct and specific attention before this program was implemented. Thus, it is in charge of

prioritizing efforts to recover crafts, cuisine, dance, music, and the oral history of the people.

        *Special Program for Children’s Culture in the state of Baja California Sur

“Alas y Raíces a los Niños y Niñas Sudcalifornianos” (Wings and Roots for Boys and

Girls in Baja California Sur).

        In 2001, assistance was given to nine projects, but in 2002 only six projects were

approved and funded.101 The Commission to Plan the Special Fund for Children‘s Culture in the

state was reinstated in December 2003; this fund began with $175,000 USD. During the first

   Diagnóstico de las Diferentes actividades que se han realizado en el Estado de Baja California Sur con la
participación del Consejo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes y el Gobierno del Estado. (Diagnosis of the different
activities carried out in the state of Baja California Sur with the participation of Mexico’s National Council for
Culture and the Arts and the Government of the state) CONACULTA-ISC, La Paz, BAJA CALIFORNIA SUR
March 2004.
period, eleven children‘s cultural development projects were evaluated and only seven were

approved; these projects are expected to benefit 2,800 children in urban and rural areas of the

municipalities of La Paz, Comondú, Loreto, Mulegé and Los Cabos. Among the priorities of

these funds are assistance programs to creators and artists whose production is mainly geared

toward cultural diffusion among children in the state. From 2000 to 2003, the following

assistance has been given:

      Year            Number of participants                 Number of awards          Resources given (USD)
      2000            220                                    15                        $163,000
      2001            248                                    37                        $710,500
      2002            225                                    42                        $1,074,800
      2003            198                                    33                        $1,100,740
      Total           891                                    127                       $2,614,040
          Source: made by the author from information from the Instituto Sudcaliforniano de Cultura 102

          * Program to train art promoters and creators.

          In 1999, 160 hours of cultural training were provided to 136 participants; in 2000, eighty

hours of training were provided to sixty-eight participants; in 2001, 268 hours to 360

participants; in 2002, 208 hours to 575 participants; and in 2003, 52 hours to 221 participants.

During this administration in the state, a total 768 hours training have been provided to 1,360


          In 2003, 620 hours of training were provided in disciplines such as theater, dance,

literature and music. To achieve this, there was coordination between CONACULTA, the

National Institute of Fine Arts, and the Program of Creators in the States. All of the above

contributed with grants to undertake the different activities related to the training of creators

and artists.

         In 2003, the government sector expended a total of $2,092,416 USD for arts and

culture, of which the federal government provided US$908,533 USD, and $1,182,982 USD was

expended by the state government.103 With financial funds for culture and the arts it has been

possible to regulate, monitor and optimize the inflow of resources for the different areas of art

diffusion and creation in the state and its municipalities, but much is still to be done.

         The lack of a state Council for Culture and the Arts, which do exist in other parts of the

country, jeopardizes the management of economic resources both in the public and private

sectors. One of the main problems for cultural management, due to the fact that there is no

such agency, is the way in which the amount is presently apportioned and received by the

agency to which the Instituto Sudcaliforniano de Cultura is ascribed.104

         There is no cultural policy in the state encouraging joint participation of other sectors

such as civil society and the private sector. The participation of other non-governmental sectors

in cultural management is incipient, and this results in a dispersion of efforts and a lack of vision

for common goals and ends. There is no agency that receives, coordinates, promotes, or

contributes to the citizenry or voluntary participation that may be key to cultural development

in Baja California Sur.

    Statistical concentrate of the Annual Closing of the Progress of Works, 2003, Instituto Sudcaliforniano de
    As mentioned, at the beginning of this document, the ISC is ascribed to the state Coordinating Office for Social
Welfare, which is not specialized in cultural management, nor is this its only function.
       These problems result in the lack of an overall, converging project, or of a well-defined

policy with clear objectives of the cultural development that is being pursued by the

government and society in Baja California Sur.

               3.2 Response from NGOs

       Some of the problems related to the lack of resources for music diffusion in the state

are being attended to by the following non-profit organizations:

       La Paz Philharmonic Association takes care of funding and promotion for the state

Youth Philharmonic Orchestra. This association endeavors to provide instruments to young

musicians that are part of the orchestra. Donations are mostly in kind. In order to bring into

Mexico instruments donated abroad, the Philharmonic Association has undertaken difficult

importation procedures.

       The Friendly Musicians Club works mainly in the diffusion of different music genres in

low-income neighborhoods in La Paz city. The goal is to call the attention of young people to

this art expression as a means of personal fulfillment. Similarly, the association has organized

seminar-presentations of the history of music in Mexico. The strategy of seminar-presentations

has helped raise funds to assist musicians who live in difficult situations.

       The Association of People from Oaxaca Living in Baja California Sur is taking care

of the diffusion of folk dance in Baja California Sur and, to this end, every year it coordinates the

presentation of shows with ―la Guelaguetza‖ (dances from seven regions in the state of Oaxaca)

in the five municipalities of the state. This association seeks to organize workshops that
promote the manufacturing of crafts, the dissemination of dance, music and, in general, the

recovery of culture by extending its presence throughout the state.

       The Association of Craftsmen in Baja California Sur, and Craftsmen Land, Sea,

and Desert manages training courses and workshops for craftsmen in different communities of

the state. The association previously consolidated a crafts marketing center known as the House

of the Baja California Sur Craftsman. The main work undertaken by these two associations is to

link crafts with production and cultural recovery projects.

       Friends of the Regional Anthropology and History Museum in Baja California Sur

helps organize cultural activities in the Museum of the Regional History of La Paz, and promotes

new cultural activities for the community of that city. Their activities consist mainly of the

promotion of courses, exhibitions, etc., thus contributing to the recovery of the historical

memory of the region and the country, using as central resource the collections saved and

exhibited in the Regional Museum.

       Baja California Sur Writers work to propagate writers‘ literary works, particularly

those that deal with topics related to Baja California Sur. They respond to the need for

materials promotion among social sectors that have not for any reason received literary

education. They are in close contact with the reading promotion programs of public libraries

and basic and middle education institutions. To be able to comply with this obligation, their

main goals are to manage, publish and distribute literary works by writers, members of their

association, and by other authors significant to the region.

The Palapa Society, A.C., located in Todos Santos, is responding to the needs for the

promotion of cultural, artistic, musical and social activities. The association aims at generating
artistic values and art appreciation educations – particularly among artists – from a community

perspective. Presently, this association is managing human and economic resources for the

restoration of the murals inside the 21st Century Cultural Center ―Prof. Nestor Agúndez

Martínez,‖ which are rapidly deteriorating.

       Whale Museum of Baja California Sur. This association is in charge of the whale

museum. It combines environmental education with the creation of spaces for the promotion of

works of art by regional and national artists that deal with the topic of cetaceous, mainly

whales. It has an environmental education program whose main goal is to promote artistic

activities, mainly among children. To attain this goal, the association generates convivial spaces

for the public at large in order to be initiated in art appreciation and execution. Presently, they

are managing human and economic resources to enlarge and optimize the facilities of the


4. Needs in Art and Culture

       4.1 Needs of the municipality of Los Cabos

       In the municipality of Los Cabos there is no NGO making any efforts for the diffusion,

promotion and creation of cultural activities. The little information there is about the process

and the complicated logistics needed in order to create civil society organizations has been one

of the main hurdles for people who have shown some interest in doing this.

       The following are the needs of the municipality of Los Cabos in the field of arts and

-           Renovation of spaces in the Cabo San Lucas Culture House in order to have workshops

    for theater and puppet theater.

-           Renovation of a mirror room in Cabo San Lucas Culture House for the dance


-           The building of a multiple use hall to show films and present the results of workshops in

    the Culture House of Cabo San Lucas.

-           Waterproofing of the roof in San José del Cabo‘s Culture House.

-           Creation of an audiovisual hall to show films, documentaries, videos, etc.

-           Creation of an Internet room for the San José del Cabo library. This community does

    not have a theater house or a forum. It would be most useful for it to have at least an open-air

    forum to hold cultural events.

-           Creation of arts and crafts schools for Cabo San Lucas and San José del Cabo.

-           Provision of adequate facilities for the Culture Houses in the communities of Miraflores

    and Santiago. This includes furniture, cultural programs, workshops and trained teachers to give


-           Establishment of a funding program to provide basic education schools with art

    education teachers.

-           Creation of a program of scholarships for artists, creators and culture promoters.

-           Creation of reading rooms for remote communities and low-income neighborhoods.

            People living in this municipality express the urgent need to provide children and young

    people with more options for recreation and leisure to counteract the negative effects of an

    indiscriminate use of television.
              On the other hand, there is the need to establish a program to research, publicize, and

    value the wealth of heritage found in the mission system. Also, a museum with the theme of the

    missions is required in San José del Cabo, Santiago, or Miraflores, since it would help attract

    tourism to benefit the economic development of these communities.

    4.2 Needs of the municipality of La Paz

    The main needs of the municipality of La Paz are the following:

-             Culture propagation campaigns

-             Agreements between civil society organizations and government agencies to open up

    management opportunities.

-             An interactive museum for children

-             Audiovisual halls.

-             Open air centers on environmental education.

-             Open air theater houses for mass shows.

-             Resources to rescue the Library of the Californias and CONTUMEN, and of other


-             A bus for a roving library and culture shows.

-             Re-establishment of cultural radio and television.

-             Regular and affordable high quality shows.

-             Funds to recruit art education teachers to work directly with schools, without the need

    for them to be paid by the Secretary of Public Education.

-             Creation of an arts school, with infrastructure, teachers and programs.
-          Crafts promotion and creation projects and funding are needed; as well as specific

    programs to attend to the demands of rural communities.

-          Inter-institution agreement to expedite the import of equipment for culture diffusion

    and the export of crafts.

-          Creation of a state Council for Culture and the Arts.

    4.3 Needs of the municipality of Mulegé

           One of the main needs in the municipality of Mulegé is the management of resources

    earmarked for projects aimed at the recovery of the cultural and oral history of Santa Rosalía.

    This need could be satisfied if an NGO or inter-disciplinary committee is organized to recover

    local culture. If a research group is considered, it is indispensable that some higher education

    institution be involved in this difficult task. A program in the UABCS could be created.

           To look after art education in basic education institutions, there is a need for economic

    resources for room, materials, and recruitment of teachers that are not necessarily paid by the

    Secretary of Public Education.

           For culture diffusion, help is needed to publish books on the history of Santa Rosalía and

    to publish the research made on archeological sites, as well as a culture center with art courses

    and workshops, an audiovisual hall, and a theater house.

           A trust fund must be established for the reconstruction and rehabilitation of the

    buildings that have some historical value that are being lost, both those that belong to the

    mission complex and those in the mines historical zone.
       Guerrero Negro has a need for closed recreational areas that are suitable to the

temperate weather which prevails most of the year, where cultural and sports events,

coordinated by the education sector, could take place; these events could also help in the

integration of the community.

4.4 Needs of the municipality of Loreto

       Loreto only has one library to serve the entire municipality, therefore there is urgent

need to create community libraries in rural areas; these libraries must have special rooms and

materials for children and young people.

       To diminish the severe lack of cultural infrastructure present in this municipality, it is

necessary to create a culture center offering art education workshops, and devoted to the

diffusion of culture, prioritizing overall culture promotion programs specially geared toward

children and young people.

       In the field of culture recovery, economic resources are needed to implement a project

aimed at the recovery of the culture of the missions in the municipality, as well as for oral

history and folk tales.

       Regarding the rehabilitation of the architectural-historical heritage, it is urgent to

complete the restoration of altarpieces in San Javier‘s mission, the overall restoration of the

church, and the recovery of the immediate environs.

       If the heritage of ancient Californians and of the old Rancho society is to be kept alive,

the archeological site of Cuevas Pintas will need to be conserved and publicized. Also, the

archeological sites of the San Javier mission and of the historical archives of the municipality of
Loreto need to be catalogued. Recovery and study of the remains of the Jesuit missionary Juan

de Ugarte are needed.

       It is necessary to train music, plastic art, theater and dance teachers to work directly in

primary and secondary schools of the municipality, to build a theater house in Loreto, and an

open-air forum in San Javier to hold the Festival of the Missions.

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