Since the loss of my mom, I’ve been more drawn to the Blessed Mother, not so much in pious devotion, but rather in a raw state of longing. If Mary is indeed our mother as Jesus tells us from the cross, then she becomes so within our unvarnished realities. Every apparition of her speaks to this. So why not the same for us individually?
In this piece, which for now I’m calling Our Lady of the Mangos, Mary appears in the image of Indian folk art. Dressed in a sari among the mangos, frangipani (plumeria), and rajnigandha (tuberose), this painting pulls from my childhood memories of India.
Standing in the garden courtyard of my mother’s childhood home, the smell of jasmine and rajnigandha mingled sweetly as it wafted in the air. Freshly peeled, dripping mangoes were a common treat, leaving us with sticky hands and lips. The frangipani added to the sweetness of the air with its hint of coconut and gardenia scents mingling with whatever spices were drifting from the kitchen.
We didn’t visit often, but this home was my mom’s pride, filled with memories of her adventures. It was built by her own father from the ground up like the business he created. It was always filled with people from all walks of life - international businessmen and beggars off the street - sometimes at a moment’s notice to the dismay of my grandmother. It was our ancestral home, even if only visited every few years. And here it is Mary came to me now, in my sorrow and longing, always leading me back to Jesus...
Size: 8x10" Giclee Print
Archival Matte is midweight (230gsm)
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