I will be working out of state this week, and so will not be shipping or open for vistors at the gallery.   The Indigo Arts website will be active as always, I will respond to emails, and I will be able to ship orders after October 26th.

The Indigo Arts website has remained active over the last year and a half despite the widespread shutdowns due to the COVID-19 virus.   I have been able to resume regular operations.  I am able to pack and ship most orders within a few days.   Shipping times have increased during this period.  The gallery is open to visitors on an appointment only basis and according to city masking regulations.   Please phone or email ahead.  

Note:  USPS service remains very  slow.   I don't recommend it if you are in a hurry.   Please note also that USPS shipping estimates include little or no insurance, which we must charge separately.
Please stay safe!

Guatemala's Folk Saints: Maximon/San Simon, Rey Pascual, Judas, Lucifer, and Others

SKU: B-Guat
Product Status: 

Jim Pieper

Pieper and Associates, Los Angeles, 2006
246 pages, 402 color photos

The icons documented in this handsome volume appear in many physical forms, ranging from life-size to half an inch tall. They reflect a belief system deeply rooted in the ancient Mayan religion of Guatemala and influenced by centuries of superimposed Christianity. The objects whose photographs appear here are collected as ethnographic folk art by aficionados but they, and the saints they represent, are a living part of Guatemalan culture.

Guatemala's Folk Saints is a rich mélange of observation, interviews, and photographs that combine to give a vivid and intimate portrait of this particular variety of syncretic Christianity. Including extensive information on altars, prayers, and the pantheon of the saints themselves, the book focuses on an entity known both as Maximon and San Simon, a spiritual representative to whom any kind of request can be made. Although petitioners are usually encouraged to pray only for "good causes," San Simon can also be enlisted to get rid of evil spells or even to cast one.

San Simon may be a bundle of woven textile topped with a hat or a life-size figure with his face hidden behind a mask and designer sunglasses. He may wear cowboy boots or be covered in petitioners' offerings of silk scarves. Clouded in incense and addressed in indigenous dialects, he is Mayan. Addressed in Spanish, his Christian veneer becomes clear.

Other chapters address Rey Pascual (a skeletal deity), the Ajitz Judas, Lucifer, Don Diego, and San Gregorio. The book includes a glossary and bibliography. This unique documentation of modern Mayan culture will be of interest to scholars, collectors, and travelers.