National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of Bulto (St. Ignatius) Bulto (St. Ignatius)
Rendered by Carl O'Bergh (artist), c. 1938
watercolor and graphite on paper
overall: 52.3 x 34.7 cm (20 9/16 x 13 11/16 in.) Original IAD Object: 18" high; 5 1/4" wide
Index of American Design
1943.8.16465
Not on View
From the Tour: Folk Arts of the Spanish Southwest from the Index of American Design
Object 13 of 25

A "bulto" was used for daily reverence, for general decoration, and as a talisman. "Bultos" were placed in churches and private homes. "Bultos" and "retablos" were often produced by traveling "santeros," who went from town to town selling their work. This figure represents Saint Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the Jesuit order. The identification of the saint, who was a popular subject in Spanish New Mexico, is based on the monogram IHS, a contraction of "Jesus."

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