Valley Artists Selected in Exhibit Honoring Our Lady of Guadalupe and St. Juan Diego

Photo Courtesy of Archdiocese of Los Angeles

The work of Mission Hills artist Lalo Garcia is currently part of an exhibit for Our Lady of Guadalupe and St. Juan Diego at the downtown Cathedral in Los Angeles.

Ten art pieces that are part of a exhibit in honor of Our Lady of Guadalupe and St. Juan Diego have been installed at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, 555 W. Temple Street, and will be open to the public until Dec. 16. 

The selected artwork by sacred artist Lalo Garcia, and artists Laura Vasquez Rodriguez, Rosa Maria Alvarez and Rick Ortega, is installed adjacent to the chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Guadalupe, which houses the only piece of the tilma or cloak in the U. S., from the original in the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City. The exhibit features images of the Virgin of Guadalupe and St. Juan Diego, and other spiritual and nature images. 

Both Garcia and Ortega are from the San Fernando Valley.

“With our artwork we honor the Virgin of Guadalupe, as the patroness of the arts,” said Mission Hills artist Garcia, who has created artwork which graces the walls of the Cathedral and parishes throughout the Archdiocese. 

“The intention was to give thanks for the blessings received through Nuestra Morenita and San Juan Diego, as patrons of the arts. Through the testimonies embodied by each one of the artists on their work, I invite the visitors to this exhibit to meditate on their own blessings and at the same time, to enjoy the beauty of each one of the pieces,” said Garcia.

The exhibit marks the celebrations honoring Our Lady of Guadalupe and St. Juan Diego throughout the Archdiocese and at the Cathedral. 

A month-long spiritual pilgrimage leading up to the 88th Procession and Mass in honor of Our Lady of Guadalupe on Dec. 1 in East Los Angeles is visiting 18 designated parishes throughout the Archdiocese, and two cemeteries, where several activities are taking place, to welcome the traveling images, including Masses, processions, rosaries, prayer services, veneration and music.

There are feast day events to mark the apparition of the Virgin of Guadalupe being held  at Santa Rosa parish in San Fernando and surrounding parishes. 

The annual celebration in honor of Our Lady of Guadalupe at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels will be held on the eve of her Feast Day, Wednesday, Dec. 11, starting at 6 p.m. and culminating with a midnight Mass at 12 a.m. The festivities will begin at 6 p.m. with traditional dances on the Cathedral’s Plaza as a tribute to the Blessed Mother, followed by veneration of a relic of the tilma (a piece of the original mantle where the Virgin miraculously appeared to St. Juan Diego) at 9:30 p.m. At 10 p.m., the celebration moves inside the Cathedral for a Rosary prayer. At 10:30 p.m. there will be a mariachi performance, and special invited guest singers William Garza, Nancy Sanchez, Jacky Ibarra, Cheli Madrid and Ulices Chaidez will serenade the Virgin.

Born in Michoacan, Mexico, Garcia is the lead artist of the mural of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe overlooking the Hollywood Freeway on the Cathedral Plaza. His work can also be seen at several Catholic parishes in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For more information, please visit https://www.lalogarcia.com/biography/. 

Los Angeles-born Laura Vasquez Rodriguez’s art focuses on spirituality and art, the bond between mother and child, life and death, and love and healing. She is a resident artist at Casita del Pueblo in Whittier. For more information, visit https://lauravrodriguez.net/biography. 

Rick Ortega’s paintings reveal an array of indigenous symbols from Mexico’s past. He is currently a resident artist at ChimMaya Gallery in LA. For more, visit https://rickortegaart.com/biography. Rosa Maria Alvarez specializes on embossed laminate art focusing on sacred images and nature.

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