Chiapas Roof Crosses
Dr. Virginia Guessing lives part of the year in Santa Barbara and part of the year in a village in the Chiapas region in southern Mexico. She is an historian of religious art. Over the years she has collected and reproduced an unique form of religious art; roof crosses that are unique to this southern region of Mexico in addition to Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Guatemala. Last night she gave a standing lecture in the restored Cassa de la Guerra in Santa Barbara where the crosses are now being displayed.
The crosses display a wide mix of both Christian and indigenous symbols. They were place on the roofs of tiled houses, jammed into a cross-beam through the tiles. They indicated a family of faith and a belief in a protective power over the house.