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Santa María de la Antigua: Prácticas y representaciones de un culto mariano entre Sevilla y el Darién


Paolo Vignolo (Italy, 1968) is an Associate Professor at the Universidad Nacional in Bogotá. His work focuses on the exploration of inverted worlds (antipodes, carnivals, revolutions) from the Middle Ages to the present. After earning a degree in Economic and Social Disciplines, he devoted himself to social work and theatrical activities, working with the Taller de la Imagen Dramática directed by Enrique Vargas (now known as Teatro de los Sentidos), the Adra Danza company directed by Marta Ruiz, and the group Residui Teatro de Roma, of which he is a co-founder. In 2003 he defended his soon-to-be-published doctoral thesis, titled “Europa al revés: las antípodas en el imaginario del Renacimiento” [Europe in Reverse: The Antipodes in the Renaissance Imaginary] at the Écoles des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris. He is the author of a number of academic texts, essays, and performances and collaborates with the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics.



Santa María de la Antigua: The Practices and Representations of a Marian Cult from Sevilla to El Darién.

The cult of the Virgin of Antigua, which had its epicenter in Sevilla during the era of the Reconquista (the “Reconquest” of Spain from the Moors), spread across the planet along routes taken by conquerors and missionaries and continues to make its influence felt in our own day and age. The 1514 arrival of the fleet of Pedrarias de Ávila to the city of Santa María de la Antigua del Darién serves as this article’s point of departure, a lens through which to reflect on the production, circulation, and consumption of images related to this cult, whose religious and economic power derive from its magical-performative qualities. The essay explores this phenomenon’s importance in the process of the Europeans’ material and symbolic appropriation of the New World and its effects on the incipient construction of a colonial order.


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