Clay Àrbol de la Vida
This clay Àrbol de la Vida (tree of life) was made by hand in central Mexico, representing the Lady of Guadalupe version of a Tree of Life sculpture, from the state of Puebla. Artwork from this area is characterized by a combination of bold colours, fine detail, and bold brushstrokes. In this Tree of Life, the artist has used a variety of vibrant blue tones. At the base of the tree, branches protrude, on which angels, birds and flowers are positioned and as with most Guadalupe decor, a cherub angel sits directly below the Virgin presently in the center.
The decorative clay pieces known as Àrbol de la Vida were developed from ceremonial candelabra and incense burners made by crafters from Izucar de Matamoros, Puebla State. The design was believed to have been inspired by the bronze and silver pieces brought to the churches by their friars. As time went by, the clay replicas became more colourful and intricately decorated; with flowers, leaves, people and animals on their branches; each representing important geographical or biblical symbolism.
Saul Montesinos has been creating Day of the Dead artworks from clay in the style of well-known Castillo work for as long as he can remember. He first began his work as a young boy in his father’s workshop, but as his father aged, Saul took over the family business. He has now made a name for himself through his work, which is created in only Izúcar de Matamoros, Mexico.
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