Friday, May 20, 2016

Tlacolula, the capital of Chocolate in the Central Valleys of Oaxaca

For Estela and me, our four-day stay at the 11the International Festival of Historical and Ancient Music came to an end on Sunday afternoon, when our rally through the Valle Central de Oaxaca came to its final stop, at a town famous for its popular rural market and for its delicious chocolate: Tlacolula.
The façade of the Church of Tlacolula
Bell towers flank Santa Maria de la Asunción
Tlacolula, on both sides of the façade. Towards
our right hand is the Cruz Atrial and behinds it,
the side Chapel of Nuestro Señor.

The atrium of the Church provides an area of peace
 and tranquility, away from the clamor and chaos
of the surrounding  market
The Capillas de Pozo or Well-Chapels in each
corner of the atrium add a touch of distinction
and décor to the sanctuary

The side chapel "De Nuestro Señor" is richly decorated
The Dominicans began construction of Santa Maria de la Asunción de Tlacolula Church towards the end of the 16th Century. The richly decorated side chapel or Capilla de Nuestro Señor was the starting point for the entire shrine, and follows an aesthetic approach similar to that of Santo Domingo de Guzman, in nearby Oaxaca, an approach which for some might seem asphyxiating or cluttering, but for all, it is quite overwhelming.

Side altar Retablo in the main church

Neoclassical-styled Altarpiece of
"El Señor de Tlacolula" at the 
Capilla de Nuestro Señor
The inside of the Church of Our
Lady of the Assumption, Tlacolula
has a mystical feeling, heightened by
gleaming bolts of light coming through
the windows, alongside shadows of
silver and gold.

The Octagonal Dome of the Chapel. 

Almost in all Churches, the
spandrels of the main dome are
decorated with effigies of the
four evangelists. Here, in the
Capilla de Nuestro Señor, each
spandrel is decorated with an

The Central theme of the Capilla de Nuestro
Señor is the Passion of our Lord, Jesus Christ

A beheaded martyr carries his
head, in the Capilla de Nuestro

The restored organ peeps down at us from the
right corner of the Choir loft.

The beautiful restored organ receives a last-minute
review before the beginning of the early evening

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