Fileteado porteño folk painting


Oct 9, 2007

Fileteado porteño is a traditional style of folk painting. Although the exact origins of fileteado porteño remain a mystery, it is widely believed to have originated in the port city's old wagon factories at the turn of the 20th century.

I took a workshop from him a couple of years ago. Certainly, I am no master, but I understand the basics. He is a great artist, a good teacher, an all around cool guy, and a proud steward of the tradition. He even designed limited run coca cola bottles and Nike shoes with filete designs.
Interestingly enough, most of the design motifs of filete are based on scroll work done in iron- as a blacksmith, I found the connection obvious, but many people may not realize that the scroll and the acanthus leaf are essential elements of forged ironwork going back centuries. As are the small flowers, and the common use of shaded spheres- small balls are often forged on the ends of scrolls.
Another thing I find really cool about filete is the history of snappy phrases that were originally painted by the filete artists on carts, and then trucks. Insults, bragging, proverbs, snippets of poems and songs- frases of all sorts have always personalized the trucks and carts.
I always prefer to ride on a colectivo that has filete to one that doesnt.