3.23.2007

"Riding with Mary"

As you all know, I love any and all kinds of art about the Virgin Mary. Check out this short video about the artist Chris Haston and his series, "Riding with Mary". It's awesome! I'd love to have one of these pieces grace my home. Funny thing, some people have made comments to me about La Virgen, and how it would be sort of like idolatry to display a statue of her. Personally, I think that is ridiculous. I might not be Catholic, but I've said this before, I highly esteem Mary as the mother of Jesus. But I don't worship her.

Statues of La Virgen have always been comforting to me. Maybe it is my Catholic background, my time in catecism, the times my mom and my aunts dropped us off at Mass and I sat there totally oblivious to what the priest was saying, but enjoying the incense and the lighting and the art on the walls immensely. When I was little and I visited my grandparents in East L.A., my great grandmother Amalia used sit in her stuffy little room watching her novelas, surrounded by her candles, her santos, her rosary beads, her giant picture of Jesus and His sacred heart. She also had these bottles with various herbs floating in it which she would rub on her skin. My favorite was the bottle of green alcohol that smelled like mint because that one had marijuana steeping in it. My Nana also used to have this little shrine in her backyard with the Virgin Mary, where my brother and I used to play all the time. I guess it is the combination of these experiences that gives me a warm feeling whenever I see a little figurine of La Virgen. I'm going to keep my eye out for a statue just like the one in this movie. Thank goodness my man has a background in faux-finishing so he can hook her up for me, and give it a nice patina.

What I loved most about the film was the comment that artist made about people that suggested he photograph his statue in questionable backgrounds, to which he politely refused. He respected her enough to say no. And I think that is really cool.

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