“La Anunciación (The Annunciation)” by Armando Lopez, 1999. Egg tempera on canvas, 26 x 26 inches. www.armandolopez.comA naked Angel Gabriel brings Mary the news that she will bear God’s son in “Anunciación (The Annunciation)” by Armando Lopez. The angel’s buttocks are fully exposed, emphasizing the erotic union of body and spirit behind the Christmas miracle. The annunciation has been a standard subject for artists over the centuries, but they almost always show the angel conversing with Mary. Lopez surprises the viewer by capturing a moment that has been ignored -- just AFTER the revelation, when the angel has turned to leave. The legless angel has no need of feet, for he has wings to fly. The painting provides a starting point for reflection on one of the Bible passages that is usually read on Christmas Day: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God… And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:1, 1:14) Lopez is a Tarascan native born in the small village of Santa Maria in the southwest Mexican state of Michoacan. He combines both native Tarascan and Catholic imagery in his art, which has been featured in exhibitions across the Americas. The vibrant colors, flattened forms and almost surreal imagery of “La Anunciation” are reminiscent of the Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, one of the most celebrated artists of the 20th century. Lopez lives in New Mexico. Please come back tomorrow for AltXmasArt 3: “Mother of God: Mother of the Streets” by Brother Robert Lentz.