The Saint Paintings are painted onto hardboard by various members of the Lorenzo family. The family originates from Xalitla, Guerero. Xalitla, which is halfway between Mexico City and the Pacific resort of Acapulco, was famous for painted ceramics. With the advent of mass tourism in the 1960s, however, local artisans saw the need for a more portable product, and started painting onto amate, bark, and paper. These paintings often contain many miniature figures and illustrate village life and festivals. Lucas Lorenzo began painting in this style. After he taught his compadre/best friend, the technique, he decided to do something different so that they wouldn’t end up competing for business. It was then that he started painting larger figurative pictures, mainly of saints and virgins. His oldest son Jesus Lorenzo followed his father into painting in this style. As these paintings became more popular, other family members started painting in similar but distinctive styles.
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