Original Painting: Our Lady of Guadalupe


    Good morning! Here we are starting another week, another Monday. Let's enjoy some folk art then, to start the week off right!
  My latest painting was this little rendition of "Our Lady of Guadalupe." Considered by many to be the emblem of Mexico and a beloved version of "Our Lady", "Our Lady of Guadalupe has a fascinating story and the original, miraculous piece is still on view in Mexico today.

  According to Catholic Online: "The opening of the New World brought with it both fortune-seekers and religous preachers desiring to convert the native populations to the Christian faith. One of the converts was a poor Aztec indian named Juan Diego. On one of his trips to the chapel, Juan was walking through the Tepayac hill country in central Mexico. Near Tepayac Hill he encountered a beautiful woman surrounded by a ball of light as bright as the sun. Speaking in his native tongue, the beautiful lady identified herself:
"My dear little son, I love you. I desire you to know who I am. I am the ever-virgin Mary, Mother of the true God who gives life and maintains its existence. He created all things. He is in all places. He is Lord of Heaven and Earth. I desire a church in this place where your people may experience my compassion. All those who sincerely ask my help in their work and in their sorrows will know my Mother's Heart in this place. Here I will see their tears; I will console them and they will be at peace. So run now to Tenochtitlan and tell the Bishop all that you have seen and heard."
  As the Bishops in these stories always do, he demanded proof of this miracle. Juan Diego was then walking near the hill again, this time to visit a sick relative, when the apparition appeared to him again, claiming that his relative would be healed if Juan Diego would pick roses from the hillside to bring to the bishop as his miracle.

   Juan Diego did as he was asked, which was a miracle itself as roses didn't grow in this arid landscape, especially in the middle of December. But he found the roses, gathered them in his cloak, and when he brought them to the bishop, he dropped the cloak and let the roses fall to the ground. The bishop and his attendants were said to gasp in amazement--- not at the flowers, but at the perfect image of Mary that appeared fused into the fabric of the cloak. The image was "Our Lady of Guadalupe, clothed in a blue star covered cloak and pink dress with a ribbon around her waist. She is standing on a dark crescent moon, an ancient Aztec symbol, held up by a cherub, a very Christian element.

  What was also so interesting about this particular image of Mary is that she is shown as a "mestiza", a young woman of mixed features who is both Spanish and Aztec. Her image is one of the first to show the intermingling of these two different cultures, and was instrumental in bringing in many of the area's native population into the Christian faith. Because of this, she has become a symbol of national and religious pride for generations of Mexicans-- and one of the most beloved renditions of Mary in the world.

  If you'd like to learn more about Our Lady of Guadalupe, you can visit these sites:

Catholic Online

Sancta.org

Encyclopedia Brittanica


 I am happy to report that this piece has already sold and is on her way to her new home! I am busy painting more small originals that I will list when they're done, so keep an eye on the etsy shop!
Happy Monday,
H

2 comments

  1. Don't have time right now to read your whole article, but I love that painting of Our Lady of Guadalupe. So often the pictures of her are not very vibrant as I am sure Juan Diego's tilma was when Our lady created it. I need to look into getting a copy of your painting. God Bless!

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  2. Heather, this painting is stunning!! The colors and the story are just beautiful too. I love how you wove the story and painting details together.

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Each and every comment is appreciated! Thanks for coming to visit me :) ~Heather

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