Latin America, Mexico, ca. 1883 CE. An excellent example of a tin ex-voto, a devotional painting. This one is beautifully preserved and has fantastic artwork. It tells the story of a man who fell from a hot air balloon one hundred and seventy meters! He was saved through the power of his wife's prayer to the Virgin of Guadalupe. Painted above the paragraph describing his story is a fantastical scene of a man in an impeccable grey suit falling through grey skies which part in the upper left of the image to reveal the Virgin of Guadalupe standing against a calm blue backdrop. Mounted on a modern wooden backing. Size: 7" W x 10" H (17.8 cm x 25.4 cm)
Ex-votos are narrative paintings created to ask for healing or blessing that are popular in Mexican visual culture. This tradition was inspired by the Greeks and was brought to the New World by the Spaniards. These votive paintings were hung in a church or placed adjacent to an image in order to celebrate and give thanks for the recovery of the donor or the donor's love one(s) from an illness or dangerous situation. In essence, ex-votos represent the spiritual or physical gains received by the donor. These paintings include hand painted passages that relate the details of the cure or the rescue. Typically, however, this commentary is replete with regional dialect and difficult to translate. Nevertheless, if one is familiar with the Spanish language, it is possible to get the gist of these anecdotal paintings, especially given the visual imagery.
Provenance: private California, USA collection
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Small areas of paint loss, mainly on one corner of the text. Most text is still quite readable. Very nice condition for its age, especially compared to other tin ex-votos. Displayed on a 20th C. frame.