Similar in form to the retablo, “ex-votos,” are devotional paintings which offer thanks to a particular saint in the form of a short narrative. The origin of the term is Latin, and means “for solemn vow or promise.” An ex-voto painting is typically comprised of three elements: a scene depicting a tragedy or someone with a grave illness or injury, a depiction of the intervention of a saint on behalf of the afflicted, and an inscription describing the tragic event and which gives thanks for the divine intervention.
The inscription on this piece can be translated:
“My husband was very sick with heart failure. They did a very delicate operation to save his life. I am thankful to the Virgin of Guadalupe for the miracle of saving his life.”
Milagros are religious folk charms and hangings, traditionally used by the people to petition saints for help or protection. For example, a horse or sheep figure may be left to ask for help in healing a sick animal or for … Read More