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"Flaming June"
Sculpture
$3,500
For more Info Click de Image
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"DE CARNAVAL"
EDITION OF 6 - 2003
AIXA RIVERA - SCULPTOR
13" HIGH - MARBLE BASE 9" X 5.5" X 2"
BRONZE $1,200
Available at the Museo de Arte de Ponce store and Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico store.

     
     
"TOCO, TOCO, TOCO, TOCO..."
MASK OF LOIZA
EDITION OF 5 - 2003
YOLANDA VELAZQUEZ - SCULPTOR
12" X 13" BRONZE
MARBLE BASE 6" X 2"
$800
     

The Mask of the "Vejigante"

Every 25th of July marks the beginning of the "Fiestas de Santiago Apostol" (Santiago Apostol Feasts) in Loiza, a town located east of San Juan, Puerto Rico. The Apostol "Santiago Matamoros" Santiago Slayer of Moors"), symbol of the Christian faith during Spain's "Reconquista" (Spain's quest to free it self from arab rule), appears early in the days of the spanish conquest of the Caribbean, as he was frequently invoked by the spaniards for strength and protection during their fights against the Carib indians anf foreign pirates.

In Loiza, a predominantly african community, Santiago was identified with "Chango", god of thunder and war, from Nigerian Yoruba folklore. Its traditional colors, red and black, distinguish him.

"Vejigantes" (veh . hee . gan . tehs). Their masks are grotesque and crowned with horns, and are usually made out of coconuts. In their hand, they carry a long stick with an air-filled cow "vejiga" (bladder) at the end, hence the name "Vejigantes". They run aroynd the streets, rhyming in deep and distorted voices while children rhyme and dance along with them.

It is said that in colonial times, during pirate invasion landlord would dress their slaves as "vejigantes", to scare the intruders away and to keep them from attacking their villages.

     

     
"VEJIGANTE A LA BOLLA..."
MASK OF PONCE
EDITION OF 5 - 2003
YOLANDA VELAZQUEZ - SCULPTOR
8.5" X 10" BRONZE
MARBLE BASE 6" X 2"
$800
     

The Vejigante (bay-he-GAHN-tay) is a fantastic, colorful character introduced into carnival celebrations hundreds of years ago. He is a classic example of the blending of African, Spanish, and Caribbean influences in Puerto Rican culture.

The name Vejigante comes from the Spanish word for bladder, vejiga. The Vejigante inflates a dried cow's bladder and paints it to resemble a balloon. The Vejigante's costume is made from scraps of fabric and looks like a clown suit with a cape and bat wings under the arms.
During the carnival celebrations in Loíza Aldea and Ponce, the Vejigantes roam the streets in groups and chase children with their vejigas. The Vejigante is such an old character that he is even mentioned in the classic novel Don Quixote written in 1605.

     

   
   
"TOCO, TOCO, TOCO, TOCO..."
KEY RING - MASK OF LOIZA
WITH BOX AND
INFORMATION BOOKLET
HANDMADE IN "PEWTER"
1" X 1.75"
$12
"VEJIGANTE A LA BOLLA..."
KEY RING - MASK OF PONCE
WITH BOX AND
INFORMATION BOOKLET
HANDMADE IN "PEWTER"
1" X 1.75"
$12
     

     
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"RUMBA CELESTIAL"
YOLANDA VELAZQUEZ
BRONZE 5" HIGH
WOOD BASE 2" HIGH
SOLD
"PARRANDA ENCANTADA"
YOLANDA VELAZQUEZ
BRONZE 5.5" HIGH
MARBLE BASE
SOLD
     
   
   
"BETANCES"
SALVADOR RIVERA
BRONZE 13" HIGH
WOOD BASE
SOLD
"CABEZA DE NEGRO"
SALVADOR RIVERA
BRONZE 14" HIGH
WOOD BASE
$2,500
     
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VEJIGANTE FRENTE