As prescribed by Paulina Constancia

Vehicools series (3) – Latin America’s COLECTIVO

My son and I were on a recent visit to my hometown. My nephew Liam was eager to entertain his 2 year old cousin so he went on a treasure hunt around the house and found these toy-like objects -miniature vehicles that are almost too beautiful to play with. These miniature models became the inspiration of this week’s posts “Vehicools”. We look into vehicles that are ‘cool’ and ‘noteworthy’ because of how they came to be and what they have come to symbolize.

I got this NOVICA handcrafted ceramic mini-bus from the World Market in Evanston, Illinois. I gave this to my sister to add to her Folk Art Collection. Seeing it again after many years, inspired me to feature The COLECTIVO, or the mini-bus in many Latin American countries: Mexico, Colombia, Chile, Peru and Argentina.
Latin America’s COLECTIVO
NOVICA Miniature Model
Hancrafted in Peru 

“Happy Travels”
Passengers peer out of their respective windows,
admiring the Andean landscape,
their luggage safely strapped to the roof.
The COLECTIVO or the village mini-bus
is now a common method of local transport in the Andes.

Latin America’s COLECTIVO
NOVICA Miniature Model
Hancrafted in Peru 
A colectivo is a form of transportation in many parts of Central and South America that is generally geared towards moving the population around the vast labyrinth of roads and highways and even mountain regions. Quite often the colectivo is a mini-van or a mini bus. It may be called different names in different countries in Latin America -públicos, gauguas, combi, etc.

I remember my daily commute from the house to the ceramic studio and back on the colectivo while living in San Miguel de Allende in Mexico. It was a wonderful way of experiencing local life and meeting the common folks. They were curious about me since very few Asians visit SMA or take public transit. Some were not shy at all to ask me where I was from.

Image Source
Image Source

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This entry was posted on June 5, 2012 by in Uncategorized.
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