mother figure as representing the spirit of the earth, creativity, fertility and earth itself. Several years ago on a visit to Mexico City I visited the shrine of the Virgin of Guadalupe and learned that Guadalupe, a vision of the Virgin Mary, was perceived by the indigenous people of Mexico to be the embodiment of the Aztec Earth Mother, Coatlaxopeuh. This gave her acceptance among the population and made possible the acceptance of Catholicism in Mexico. The earth mother figure of the Andean cultures of South America is Pachamama. During the Spanish occupation of South America and the resulting forced conversion to Catholicism, the Virgin Mary was similarly accepted as a representation of the Pachamam by the indigneous people.
In researching Earth Mother figures I found that many times the Earth mother is depicted as young and vital. In my mind I see the Earth Mother as ancient, wise, patient and benevolent, gently cradling the earth in her strong hands.
When I started thinking about this piece I pictured something more colorful and joyful, with a lot of flowers and greenery around a smiling mother figure. As it developed it seemed to want to be more somber. She has concerns for her children, I suppose.
Unique Commission with First Graders
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