El Señor de la Muerte

Recumbent Christ in coffin, under pink coverlet
Probably 16th century
Wood, gesso, paint; glass eyes, wig, eyelashes; 60 in. tall (152.4 cm.)
Tlacolula, Oaxaca, Mexico

All but the face is covered with a pink fringed coverlet. The whites of the eyes present a strong contrast to the dark skin and the heavily shadowed lids. The hair extends past the knees in long ropes of curls. There is a purple fabric headband at the blood-streaked brow. A painted green crown of thorns in the basketweave pattern lies at the breast. The knees are raised, perhaps suggesting that the figure is used in Holy Week as the crucified Christ. In this regard it may also be significant that the arms are held rigidly at the sides, as if they were hinged and could be extended.

More of Crosses and Crucifixes

Photographed at the site by Richard and Claire Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.