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 the church of Santa Elena de la Cruz, Xoxocotlán

Angels
Christ: Ecce Homo
Crucifix 1
Crucifix 2
Crucifix 3
Crucifix 4
Our Lady of Mount Carmel
Our Lady of  Sorrows
Our Lady of Sorrows (Soledad)
Our Lady of the Rosary 1 and 2
St. Mary Magdalene: see Our Lady of Sorrows
St. Helena
St. John: see Our Lady of Sorrows
St. Sebastian: see Our Lady of the Rosary
St. Therese of Lisieux
Trinity
Unidentified saint

Other santos not photographed

Our Lady of the Rosary Group

Our Lady of the Rosary group

Site: Church of Santa Elena de la Cruz, Xoxocotlán.


Center: Our Lady of the Rosary I

This santo of Our Lady of the Rosary seems not to be of the earliest period. The frame is not of the standard cone shape but gives something of a shape to the upper torso.

Basis for Identification: White robe and veil, large rosary.

Media and construction: Frame construction. Face and hands are wood, gesso, paint. Hair: wig. Closed mouth.

Comparable santos in Oaxaca: Achiutla, Coixtlahuaca, Cuilapan, Teitipac1, Teitipac2, Teotitlán, Teposcolula.

External Links:
Wikimedia Commons: Statues of Our Lady of the Rosary in Mexico
Wikipedia: Our Lady of the Rosary
Christian Iconography: Our Lady of the Rosary


Left: Saint Sebastian

The tree has the traditional San Sebastian shape, but with brass tips where boughs end. Four arrows are still extant, piercing the figure at the left shoulder, right breast, left of the abdomen, and right inner thigh. The shoulders have a dislocated look. The skin is very shiny and seems to have been repainted recently.

Local Name: San Sebastián.

Basis for Identification: Arrows, tree, halo, loincloth, upturned gaze.

Media and construction: Wood, gesso, paint.

Comparable santos in Oaxaca: Achiutla, Ocotlán, Teotitlán, Tilantongo, Xoxocotlán, Yanhuitlán.

External Links:
Wikimedia Commons: Statues of Saint Sebastian in Mexico
Catholic Encyclopedia: St. Sebastian
Wikipedia: Saint Sebastian
Christian Iconography: Saint Sebastian, Martyr


Right: Our Lady of the Rosary II

One can see the blue of the unfinished part of the left arm above the wrist.

Basis for Identification: White robe and veil, rosary.

Media and construction: Wood, gesso, paint, fabric garments. Hair: wig.

Comparable santos, external links: see above


Next: Two other santos not photographed

Previous santo

Introduction to Xoxocotlán

Santos Home Page


The photo shown here is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license. You are free to share or remix it on two conditions: first, that you attribute it 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 this photo, you may distribute the resulting work only under the same or similar license to this one.