Casa de los Venados, Valladolid

4.7
Admire a fine private collection of Mexican folk art, and learn about the passion of the couple who collected it, at Casa de los Venados, the art gallery and home of American couple John and Dorianne Venator. Having bought the house in ruins, the couple spent 10 years remodeling it and filling it with over 3,000 items of Mexican folk art. Colorful skulls, antique furniture, and vibrant paintings dominate each room, bringing together different artistic styles and influences from across the country. Take a tour of the house, still home to the Venators, and learn about the history of the project. To visit Casa de los Venados and other attractions in Valladolid, use our Valladolid trip planner .
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Casa de los Venados Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
801 reviews
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4.7
TripAdvisor
  • This House is an impressive House across a sample of all the culture of Mexico and is amazing all that can be found on this site unimaginable things in addition to architecture and the construction of the House itself which is also very nice recommend 100% If you're in Valladolid and the history of Mexico like please do not hesitate to visit the House of the deer
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  • This is a private home filled with tons of Mexican folk art. The owners live there, so you have to visit during a private tour (10am everyday). This is an actual home and the tour guides invite you to...  more »
  • Wow, this place is actually better than I expected! Such a wonderful home & fabulous collection of Mexican Folk Art and Handicrafts. Everything you can of --- Ceramics, Metalwork, Woodwork, Needlework...  more »
Google
  • A must-see if in Valladolid. An incredible collection of over 5,000 pieces of Mexican folk art housed in an 18,000 square foot renovated Spanish colonial house. Friendly and informative tours each day at 10am, conducted in both English and Spanish, lasting approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes.
  • First of all the art itself. It's Mexican folk art, so a genre that needs to be handled with care. As you might expect, lots of bright colours, busy street scenes and plenty of skulls... and there is a lot of it, coming at you from all sides as soon as you walk in. Initial impressions are great, with plenty of eye candy and lots to entertain the kid in all of us. But wait... then there is another room ... and another room. There is no real organising principle, other than what might look good in a particular spot or space and the designs, motifs and colours start to repeat, and stick to the roof of your mouth... More importantly, none of the art is attributed, so you learn nothing about the artist, their heritage or the artistic tradition in which they are working. For a museum that purports to be of the art of the people this is a serious omission. Where is the context ? What's the history ? Where (in this complex country) is the politics ? Surely there is more that can and should be said about the art we are looking at ? The error is compounded by a rather unfortunate focus on the patron and collector. I guess this is not unusual in the art world but is nevertheless still rather unattractive. Only one piece was singled out for specific comment on our guided tour, on the basis that it was the first piece in the collection, an attribute that speaks more to the history and evolving taste of the collector than it does to the art itself. The effect was heightened by a rather obsequious tour guide who insisted on inviting us to admire the good taste of the collector at every turn, and especially by the visit to the owners private quarters, where in a rather uncomfortable ten minutes we held our breath wondering if we might have the opportunity to meet the great man himself, before being informed that no he would not be meeting visitors that day. So my advice to the Casa de los Venados - - decide if you are going to be a museum or a private house, the combination does not work well - if you are going to be a museum, do it properly. Give credit to the artists, organise the collection so your visitors can make sense of it and give us some information, context and intellectual stimulation to go with the eye-candy - retrain your tour guides so they are better informed about the art than they are about the owners - rename the collection if you want (credit where credit is due..) but then leave your role and ego above the door. If the Getty museum can do it then I'm sure you can to... To my fellow travellers - - worth a visit but expect to come away feeling like a kid at the end of a birthday party
  • We had a really bad guide, told a lot wrong, not a lot about the Art in the building but mostly about the history and customs of Mexico.... That would be another tour!!
  • A must see whilst in Valladolid, amazing collection in a private house... donations go to local charity’s
  • Huge private collection, super friendly and enthusiastic guide. The tour took about an hour. They raise money for charity. A must see!

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Where to stay in Valladolid

Valladolid offers an impressive range of budget-friendly accommodations, with very reasonable prices for comfortable hotels that would be much more expensive in other Mexican destinations. Parque Francisco Canton, at the very heart of the city's central grid, contains small, affordable hotels within walking distance of the best Valladolid attractions. You can also look on the western fringes of town, where you'll find several places to stay near the meeting point of routes 180 and 79.
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