Event: PIZZA TALK: Glassmaking in New Spain: A Study on Technology Transfer and Adaptation

Date & Time

October 16, 2019 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
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Contact Information

Sumiji Takahashi

Phone 310-825-4169


Fowler A222 (Seminar Room)

Event Type

Pizza Talk

Event Details


Karime Castillo

UCLA Archaeology Ph.D. Student


Karime Castillo is originally from Mexico City. She received her B.A. in Archaeology from Universidad de las Américas Puebla and her M.A. in Artefact Studies from the Institute of Archaeology, University College London. She is primarily interested in Mexican historical archaeology and colonial material culture. Her master’s thesis proposes a typology of pharmaceutical glass from London. As a historical archaeologist, she has done research on Colonial Mexican majolica and the Hacienda San Miguel Acocotla, Puebla, Mexico. She has worked for archaeological projects in different parts of Mexico, including Sonora, Mexico City, and Puebla, and has collaborated with the Franz Mayer Museum in Mexico City and London Archaeological Archive and Resource Center in London. At University of California Los Angeles she will study glass production in Colonial Mexico.


difficulties as they established their crafts in the New World. Glassmakers in particular, struggled finding the resources they needed in an unfamiliar land where glass had not been artificially made before. Nevertheless, colonial glassmakers found ways to adapt to the local resources and the industry

flourished in New Spain, predominantly in Mexico City and Puebla. By bringing together archaeology, history, ethnography, and materials science principles and methods, it is possible to explore the processes of technological transfer, adaptation and development of glass production technology in Colonial Mexico. This talk presents some results of the analysis of glass from the two main glass production centers in New Spain. The chemical composition of archaeological glass from Mexico City and Puebla reveals the various ways in which colonial artisans adapted the technology to the resources available in a different and. Historical documents bring to the fore the social aspects of the technology and help to contextualize colonial glass production within the broader scope of Spanish colonialism.