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19th C. Mexican Wood Santo - Mary Magdalene
Item Details
Description
New World, Spanish Colonial period or later, Mexico, ca. 19th century CE. A pretty, hand-carved wooden santo figure depicting a woman who is probably Saint Mary Magdalene. In art, she is often shown wearing red and green, as she is here. In the Western Christian tradition, she commonly holds a single attribute - an alabaster jar of ointment - which may be the item her left hand once held. This figure has a sweet face, with glass eyes, and long, carved brown hair that flows down her back underneath her carved veil. She has a repousse tin halo and a worshipper has given her a cross on a chain that hands around her neck. She stands on a low wooden base. Size: 6.25" L x 7.5" W x 20" H (15.9 cm x 19 cm x 50.8 cm)

Mary Magdalene is one of the most famous, and debated, figures from the life of Christ. Her true identity is unknown, and she may have been conflated in early Christian stories with another woman named Mary, but much of Christian tradition records her as a woman who traveled as a companion of Christ and who witnessed His crucifixion and resurrection. The Gospels of John and Mark specifically name her as the first person to testify to the resurrection. The alabaster box containing oil that is associated artistically with her references a "sinful woman" who anointed Christ's feet with oil.

There is a chance that this figure could also be Saint Lucia, based on the position of the hands - she was often shown holding a plate or platter with a set of eyes. However, the clothing color and open hand suggest Mary Magdalene.

Santos played an important role in bringing the Catholic Church to the New World with the Spanish colonists. These religious figures were hand-carved and often furnished with crowns, jewels, and other accessories, usually funded by religious devotees, and were used as icons to explain the major figures - Mary, Christ, and the saints - to new, indigenous converts. Likewise, they served as a connection to the Old World for Spanish colonists far from home. They became a folk art tradition in the Spanish New World, from modern day Guatemala to as far north as New Mexico and Colorado. Many of them were lovingly cared for over the years, with repairs and paint added as they aged, and played an active part for a long time in the religious life of their communities.

Provenance: private Francis and Lilly Robicsek collection, Charlotte, North Carolina, USA

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

We ship worldwide to most countries and handle all shipping in-house for your convenience.

#120710
Condition
Craquelure and small areas of loss to the paint/ and areas of overpainting as shown. Both hands have signs of repair and one is clearly meant to be holding something that is now lost.
Buyer's Premium
  • 24.5%

19th C. Mexican Wood Santo - Mary Magdalene

Estimate $2,000 - $3,000
Aug 31, 2017
See Sold Price
Starting Price $1,000
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Ships from Louisville, CO, United States
Artemis Gallery

Artemis Gallery

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Louisville, CO, United States
6,170 Followers

Ancient | Asian | Ethnographic Art

Aug 31, 2017 10:00 AM EDT|
Louisville, CO, USA
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0260: 19th C. Mexican Wood Santo - Mary Magdalene

Lot Passed
0 Bids
Est. $2,000 - $3,000Starting Price $1,000
Aug 31, 2017 10:00 AM EDT
Buyer's Premium 24.5%

Lot 0260 Details

Description
...
New World, Spanish Colonial period or later, Mexico, ca. 19th century CE. A pretty, hand-carved wooden santo figure depicting a woman who is probably Saint Mary Magdalene. In art, she is often shown wearing red and green, as she is here. In the Western Christian tradition, she commonly holds a single attribute - an alabaster jar of ointment - which may be the item her left hand once held. This figure has a sweet face, with glass eyes, and long, carved brown hair that flows down her back underneath her carved veil. She has a repousse tin halo and a worshipper has given her a cross on a chain that hands around her neck. She stands on a low wooden base. Size: 6.25" L x 7.5" W x 20" H (15.9 cm x 19 cm x 50.8 cm)

Mary Magdalene is one of the most famous, and debated, figures from the life of Christ. Her true identity is unknown, and she may have been conflated in early Christian stories with another woman named Mary, but much of Christian tradition records her as a woman who traveled as a companion of Christ and who witnessed His crucifixion and resurrection. The Gospels of John and Mark specifically name her as the first person to testify to the resurrection. The alabaster box containing oil that is associated artistically with her references a "sinful woman" who anointed Christ's feet with oil.

There is a chance that this figure could also be Saint Lucia, based on the position of the hands - she was often shown holding a plate or platter with a set of eyes. However, the clothing color and open hand suggest Mary Magdalene.

Santos played an important role in bringing the Catholic Church to the New World with the Spanish colonists. These religious figures were hand-carved and often furnished with crowns, jewels, and other accessories, usually funded by religious devotees, and were used as icons to explain the major figures - Mary, Christ, and the saints - to new, indigenous converts. Likewise, they served as a connection to the Old World for Spanish colonists far from home. They became a folk art tradition in the Spanish New World, from modern day Guatemala to as far north as New Mexico and Colorado. Many of them were lovingly cared for over the years, with repairs and paint added as they aged, and played an active part for a long time in the religious life of their communities.

Provenance: private Francis and Lilly Robicsek collection, Charlotte, North Carolina, USA

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

We ship worldwide to most countries and handle all shipping in-house for your convenience.

#120710
Condition
...
Craquelure and small areas of loss to the paint/ and areas of overpainting as shown. Both hands have signs of repair and one is clearly meant to be holding something that is now lost.

Contacts

Artemis Gallery
720.890.7700
686 S. Taylor Avenue Suite 106
Louisville, CO 80027
USA
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