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Thread: The Mission Churches of the Martyrs

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    The Mission Churches of the Martyrs

    In the 1620s, the Spanish Friars came to the Salinas Pueblos on the eastern side of the Monzano mountains of New Mexico. They built the greatest Churches of any in the territory. Fifty years later the Spanish settlements and the Pueblos were abandoned by the Spanish and the Native Americans alike. They were driven out by fierce Apache raids during an extended period of drought and famine.

    At Abo, there was a coral sandstone church headed by Fray Pedro de Ayala who was brutally killed during a raid in the early 1670s. He was the last. Over the years, the church's roof caved in and the edifice began a long decay. Today it is preserved as a national monument.

    To stand inside its remaining walls, shielded from the brutal summer sun and peer out across the desolate landscape gives you an unbelievable sense of awe for the courage of the missionary priests. A mere handful of soldiers and a once every three year pack train from Mexico (A thousand miles away) was their only connection to the country they left behind. They risked and often lost everything to bring the Word to the New World.
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    Last edited by alkratzer; 04-04-2010 at 03:38 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    An absolutely facinating and educational read and a truely wonderful painting Al. I adore the way you've handled the ground and the crumbling brick/stone.
    "I paint because I love to cut mats" (Arthur Alexander)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    14,335
    Interesting and beautifully painted Al.
    Last edited by Alexandra; 04-03-2010 at 11:14 PM. Reason: typo

  4. #4
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    Mar 2009
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    Al, thank you. Amazing and wonderful painting.

  5. #5
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    Oct 2008
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    UK
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    A fantastic painting which conjures up many thoughts. Thanks for sharing this one with us AL
    Sometimes...I remember better with my eyes closed

    My Gallery
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina
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    Great job, Al! Im a fan of Spanish colonial art and architecture, and youve really caught the feel with this one!
    The only problem with humor is that no one takes it seriously.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Texas Hill Country
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    Al - I've stood at this point of view. There is still a spirit in the air. I think your piece adds something new to a very old structure. Your style adds an almost ultra-vision feel. As though you have painted the very heat and cool of the remaining walls.
    My Website - SkylarArt.com
    "Beauty Draws those who Draw Beauty" - Skylar

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
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    I love the early history of the Americas.... and your painting is a fitting tribute to this era....

  9. #9
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    May 2007
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    Rome (Italy)
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    One of Your best. It's awfully beautiful!
    Panta rei (everything flows)!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Easton, PA
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    937
    Thanks to all that stopped by and commented! You are all too kind! Al

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