Updated: Mar 13, 2022
This painting is called "La Bendición", which means "the blessing" in Spanish. It represents my interpretation of a blessing, where a spiritual warrior is giving a blessing to a masked woman holding a xoloitzcuintle. This work is from a series I did in 2019 called "Perros Sagrados y Sus Chamanes", a contemporary mythology about spiritual transformation. It was launched in October out of my concept gallery, Galería Nepantla, in San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato Mexico. I wanted to incorporate Day of the Dead elements to embrace the death of oneself and personal transformation.
THE MEANING BEHIND "THE BLESSING"
The shaman wears a helmet filled with all of his healing herbs. The branches of "Schinus Molle", known as "pirule" is an evergreen tree commonly found in Mexico. It is used in cleansing rituals to clear out the evil spirits that hijack our conscience and our heart. A crocodile skull is found within the foliage. Crocodiles are a common symbol of death in Mesoamerica in the mythologies of the Americas.
The gold pin attached to his red cape is the 4 directions, a common practice among healers to ground an individual. The marigold, known as cempasúchil, used on the Day of the Dead, for its strong smell.
IT'S NOT ABOUT THE REVOLUTION. BUT THE EVOLUTION!
The shaman and the masked woman are modern archetypes that I created to fight and overcome the personal conflicts that lie ahead. The woman wears a "pasa montaña", which means "ski mask" (inspired by the Zapatista revolution) to be a symbol of protest. She is the protagonist of my art series called, "Legends of the Realm of Nepantla" 2007-2017. In her arms, she holds an easter lily, a symbol of death and resurrection, and a xoloitzcuintle. This breed is the most beloved dog in Mexico. 500 years ago it was buried with its owners during funeral rites, to be guides to the afterlife. In this painting, she is ready to begin her journey of self-transformation.
By the way, if you like "The Blessing", it is available in limited edition Giclees.