woman blessing a bride in a bedroom surrounded by other people
Carmen Lomas Garza’s paintings reflect her Mexican-American heritage and her life growing up in Kingsville, Texas in the 1950s and 60s. As she has said of her work: “I am a chronicler of celebrations, healing ceremonies, family stories, and shared recollections of the Chicano/Chicana community.”
The Blessing on Wedding Day is part of Garza’s series of three paintings on teenage girls and their rites of passage: dreaming (first crush), dating (and the dangers of adolescence), and marriage, the subject of this painting.
The bride—the artist’s cousin—is shown kneeling in her childhood bedroom about to receive her mother’s blessing before the wedding ceremony. She is surrounded by family members, including the artist (wearing a red blouse), who puts the finishing touches on the bridal gown. Dolls dressed in the colors of the Mexican flag, the Catholic religious articles on the wall shelf, and the black lace mantilla on the bed refer to the bride’s heritage. The packed suitcases at the base of the bed symbolize her future life.
brides; weddings; ceremonies
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