Santos in Oaxaca's Ancient Churches

A study of santos in 16th-century and other churches in Oaxaca, Mexico

 

By Claire and Richard Stracke
Funded by a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation

In Teposcolula:

Angel 1
Angel 2
Bishops group (two bishops, one monk)

Christ: Ecce Homo

Christ fallen with the cross
Christ in a coffin
Christ in a crown (with crowned infant Christ)
Christ seated in the pretorium ("Pensive Christ")
Crucifix 1 (Calvary group)
Crucifix 2
Crucifix 3
Crucifix case (with Mary, the Magdalene, one other saint)
Crucifixes (two, with two unidentified saints)

Crucifixion Group

Our Lady of Mount Carmel
Our Lady of Sorrows (Soledad) 1
Our Lady of Sorrows (Soledad) 2
Our Lady of the Rosary (with St. Dominic and a crucifix)
Palm Sunday Christ
Resurrected Christ
Sacred Heart of Jesus
St. Anthony of Padua
St. Isidore the Laborer
St. Mary Magdalene
St. Michael 1
St. Michael 2
St. Michael 3
St. Paul
St. Peter
St. Veronica
Saints Peter and Paul (?)
Unidentified Dominican
Unidentified female saint 1
Unidentified female (?) saint 2
Unidentified Franciscan
Unidentified monk 1
Unidentified monk 2
Unidentified monk 3
Unidentified monk 4
Unidentified priest 1
Unidentified priest 2
Unidentified saint 1
Unidentified saint 2
Unidentified saint 3
Unidentified saint 4
Unidentified saints (two in a cell)
Unidentified saints (three in a cell)
Virgin Mary

Other santos not photographed
Altar of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

Unidentified Deacon:
The left hand, now broken off, seems to have once held something up. The statue resembles the one that is to the right of the glass case. It seems to have been repainted.

Basis for Identification: Tonsure, dalmatic.

Site: Church of San Pedro y San Pablo, Teposcolula.

Location: Left of the central glass case in a retablo along the east wall of the south transept (see note).

Media and construction: Wood, gesso, paint. Eyes: painted.

Size: About 20 inches (50 cm.)


Saint Stephen

Basis for Identification: Tonsure, dalmatic, three rocks arranged on a book in the left hand.

Site: Church of San Pedro y San Pablo, Teposcolula.

Location: Right of the central glass case in a retablo along the east wall of the south transept (see note).

Media and construction: Wood, gesso, paint. Eyes: painted.

Size: About 20 inches (50 cm.)

External Links:
Wikimedia Commons: Saint Stephen
Catholic Encyclopedia: St. Stephen
Wikipedia: Saint Stephen
Christian Iconography: Saint Stephen, Protomartyr

Our Lady of Mount Carmel:
Closer view of the statue of Our Lady of Mount
                CarmelThe Virgin's face has a lifelike sheen, but the finish is more dull on the right hand (the left is not visible) and on the face of the child.

Local Name: La Virgen del Carmen.

Basis for Identification: Child, brown habit with bib, scapulars, full crowns on both.

Site: Church of San Pedro y San Pablo, Teposcolula.

Location: In a glass case in the center of a retablo along the east wall of the south transept (see note).

Media and construction: Wood, gesso, paint, fabric garments. Eyes: glass, with lashes. Hair: wig. Closed mouth.

Size: About 5 feet (150 cm.)

Comparable santos in Oaxaca: Coixtlahuaca main altar, Cuilapan, Ejutla, Etla, Guelavia, Huitzo, Teitipac, Tlaxiaco, Xoxocotlán, Zaachila, Zimatlán.

External Links:
Wikimedia Commons: Statues of Nuestra Señora del Carmen in Mexico
Wikipedia: Our Lady of Mount Carmel,
Virgen del Carmen (in Spanish).
Christian Iconography: Our Lady of Mount Carmel


Next: At the far end of the south transept, a retablo with a statue of a Dominican saint

Previous santo

Introduction to Teposcolula

Santos Home Page

Note: On this site, references to the cardinal directions always assume that the main altar is at the east end of the church, the narthex or entry area at the west end, and the two walls of the nave on the north and south. (The nave is the long central section.) Actual orientations may differ. Some churches are shaped like a cross; the "arms" of the cross constitute the transept.

The photos shown here are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license. You are free to share or remix them on two conditions: first, that you attribute them to the photographers, Claire and Richard Stracke, without implying any approval of your work on their part; second, that if you alter, transform, or build upon these photos, you may distribute the resulting work only under the same or similar license to this one.