Housed on the 2nd floor of the Ex-Convento Santo Domingo , the impressive Lacquerware Museum (10 a.m.–5 p.m. Tues.–Sun., free) exhibits Chiapa de Corzo ’s stand-out laca, or lacquerware. Examples include tiny jewelry boxes, bulbous gourds, and enormous wood chests, all covered with bright colors and incredibly intricate designs on a jet-black background.
The painting is done by hand—literally, in some cases, as early artists often used their fingernails instead of paintbrushes to create the finest details; feathers and cat hair were also utilized.
Lacquerware (of sorts) has long been produced by native communities in Michoacán, but was introduced in Chiapas  and elsewhere by Spanish colonizers. Mexican artisans applied their own style and materials to European techniques, and were also greatly influenced by Asian ceramics, which arrived by way of Spanish galleons en route from the Philippines.