Price: $ 775.00
While there are exceptions, the 19th century retablo painters and the paintings they authored can be grouped into two distinct categories. At one end of the spectrum, finely rendered retablo paintings executed by trained painters often rivaled or exceeded the quality of their 18th century colonial predecessors. At the other end of the same spectrum, untrained provincial painters found their success in the development of a style so naive it mostly defines the 'folk' in 'folk retablo' as we know it today. The Dyslexic painter, also known as the 'Bulbous Head Painter', falls squarely into that latter category. His loose hand and idiosyncratic style manifests itself in many different ways and in the case of this Santo Nino de Atocha retablo, it is his torso, or lack thereof, that gives him away. The Bulbous Head painter is one of the most celebrated of all 19th century retablos painters. His works are illustrated in many catalogs, books and collections but championed in 'The Art of Private Devotion - Retablo Painting of Mexico.'
El Nino de Atocha, one of the most popular subjects in retablo art, is the patron saint of travelers and prisoners, and is venerated for protection from dangerous situations. This popular image originated in Spain after the Moors invaded the town of Atocha. During the Moorish occupation many Christians were taken prisoner, most lacking basic necessities, food, and water. Only missionary children were allowed to visit the prison, and one day after family members prayed, a child carrying a basket, a staff, and a gourd of water, came dressed as a pilgrim. After he served everyone in the prison both his basket and gourd were still full and it was then believed that the miraculous visitation was none other than the Infant Jesus.
Dimensions: 14 inches vertical x 10 inches horizontal.
Condition notes: paint loss, wear, punctures in tin, pitting around edge.
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