Valentin Vidaurreta (1902 -1955) Vidauretta was a native Mexican wealthy aristocrat who became an artist (his paintings are highly desirable), an amateur horticulturalist (he collected orchids), and a silversmith. Many of Taxco’s most famous designers worked with him.
He started his career as a painter and turned to jewelry design in the early 1930s. His illustrations appear on and in many Mexican magazines and books.
He created a mural for the Mexican Village exhibition at the 1933 Century of Progress World’s Fair in Chicago and another for the Papillon Club in Mexico City.
His silversmith work was often signed by the workshop producing the design rather than with Vidaurreta’s own mark. He is known for his large pieces that include naturalistic flower belts, pins and bracelets.
Many famous Mexican silversmiths worked with Vidaurreta. For example, Antonio Pineda first went to work in Vidaurreta’s workshop and was heavily influenced by him. Vidaurreta taught Pineda to work on a large scale so Pineda could create large, substantial pieces. This coupled with the claim that Pineda removed all European and American influences from his creations gave Pineda’s pieces a uniquely Mexican feel.
Vidaurreta frequently used a floral motif in his jewelry. Other works he created were designed with the noted Mexican craftsman, Hector Aguilar. Included among their combined creations was a hand crafted silver Fleur-de-lis necklace they designed around 1940.
Vidaurreta also designed for Fred Davis at Sanborn’s, Taller Borda, and William Spratling.