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City News

Tuscaloosa's Transportation Museum Hosts “Retablos: Miracles on the Border“

Tuscaloosa, Ala.
The Mildred Westervelt Warner Transportation Museum will host the exhibit “Retablos: Miracles on the Border,“ curated by Dr. Doug Massey, professor of sociology and public affairs at Princeton University, and Jorge Durand, professor of anthropology at the University of Guadalajara, Friday, June 21 through Saturday, July 27.Retablos, a genre of folk art deeply rooted in Spanish history, represents the heart of traditional religious beliefs in traditional Mexican culture.“Retablos: Miracles on the Border“ consists of small votive oil paintings, made on tin or wood by untrained artists as gifts of gratitude to Christ, the Virgin Mary or a Catholic saint. These retablos were left anonymously at churches as offerings for miracles granted for the safe journey of migrants to the United States.  The individual pieces in this exhibit are united by the types of miracles they commemorate
the trials undergone by migrants crossing the border from Mexico into the United States.Massey and Durand used these images to study the social conditions surrounding Mexican migration, conducting statistical analyses of the age, gender, geographic origins and eventual destinations of the migrants who commissioned the votive paintings.The retablos vividly illustrate the subjects of greatest concern to migrants, whether it's the hazards of crossing the border, the trials of finding work in the United States or the relief of returning home to their families in Mexico.The Transportation Museum is located at 1901 Jack Warner Parkway. For more information about scheduling educational programs at the museum, tours and group rates, or inquiries about renting the museum and park, contact the museum directly at 205-248-4931, call Tuscaloosa 311 at 205-248-5311 or visit the website at www.mwwtm.com.