Genie modelling “Lupe” dress on the terrace of La Sussurrata, Paros.
On December 12, 1531, an indigenous shepherd by the name of Juan Diego saw the Virgin Mary. Not only was she dressed in indigenous attire, she spoke to Juan in his own indigenous language. She asked Juan to build a temple in her honor and, as a souvenir of their encounter, left her image imprinted on his cloak. And this was the beginning of the cult of the Virgen de Guadalupe.
Today La Virgen de Guadalupe is undoubtedly the most popular Mexican icon. Her image can be found on just about everything from T-shirts to coffee cups to hand fans to key chains, etc.
Before the Spaniards invaded Mexico, the indigenous people had other gods. Then the Catholic Spaniards imposed their god turning faith into dogma. But when Juan saw the Catholic Mary who dressed and talked like him and was even brown skinned like him, an important change took place. Juan’s vision transformed an alien presence and made it local. Worship was once again personalized.
a souvenir T-shirt attached to a peplum
fabric print with calla lilies and indigenous people (Frida Kahlo’s husband, Diego Rivera, loved to paint calla lilies)…appropriation is everywhere
peplum & gussets
To make it easier to get into the dress, an opening in the back.
“Lupe” is the diminutive of Guadalupe and a popular female name in Mexico. It’s a great dress for dancing especially to Little Latin Lupe Lu!
Moral of the story: personalize the world and make it yours!
Cynthia Korzekwa ©