Traditionally, Saint Christopher carried the Christ Child across the water. He is the patron of travelers and is depicted here with his staff and worn clothes of the wayfarer. The strong vertical of his walking stick leads the eye to Christopher’s halo incorporating the folds of the Child’s clothing. Halos are echoed in movement of water, and curve of the grasses below. (Oil on Canvas, 48x13x3 inches)
Catherine, an Italian nun from the 15th century is the patron of artists. Here her artistic flair is rendered with flowing hair vibrant clothes, brush in hand. Her posture zigs and zags freely across the narrow space. The paint smeared oval at the center is echoed in the oval of her halo inscribed with the painter’s maxim, “ars longa, vita brevis” – Art is long, Life is short. (Oil on Canvas, 48x13x3 inches)
Saint Martin of Tours is venerated in Mexico as Martin de Caballero. He was born in Hungary in the year 316, but is depicted throughout art history on horseback and thus, in the logic of hagiography, became the patron of cowboys in Latin America. He is depicted here with the lazy curving figure of a Marlboro man, a cowboy without his mount. Martin’s halo: “venite ubi sapor est” – Come To Where The Flavor Is. (Oil on Canvas 48x13x3 inches)
Popular notions and Irish kitsch have long ago overcome any historic picture of Saint Patrick, a bishop from the fifth century. Accordingly, he is more apt to be represented as a mischievous leprechaun than as a cleric from the dark ages. The lanky figure here captures some of the popular conceptions attached to Patrick without the bad taste. He leans at the bar, sleepy and nonchalant, somehow managing at the same time to crush the lone snake not driven out from Ireland’s shores heretofore. Oranges and whites and greens prevail, the colors of the Irish Tricolour. (Oil on Canvas, 48x13x3 inches)
Saint Francis of Assisi is best remembered for his vow of poverty and his love of God’s creation. Most often he is depicted as a placid garden figure in friar’s habit preaching to the birds. Here the ragged Francis is the contented tramp in a field, his outsized pants held up by a discarded length of rope. Birds have found a untroubled home with him and he smiles wryly at us. Words from his Canticle of the Sun frame the painting on the sides, extolling the beauty of Brother Sun, the birds and …herbs. (Oil on Canvas, 48x13x3 inches)
The Virgin of Guadalupe is not technically a Saint but is venerated as the patron of Mexico and celebrated with the saints. She is pictured here in traditional and non-traditional form. Her role as Queen of Heaven is emphasized in her cloak of stars, her position standing on the moon, and the heavenly blue border. Her usual piously humble averted gaze is replaced with a fixed stare and slight smile as she engages the viewer, offering her “help for all Christians”. (Oil on Canvas, 48x13x3 inches.
Blessed Pelagia, Patron of Dancers, 2017. 48x13x3 inches.