NOTE: All paintings in this blog posting are from our new book The Capillas of San Miguel de Allende: A Legacy of Faith (link) now available on Amazon.
A query from a reader about the size of the capillas and the atriums (courtyards) got us to thinking that a short blog on size would be informative for those of you who don’t live in Mexico and for some who do. We seldom paint people in our paintings which would give a sense of scale. People move; buildings don’t!
In the future, we will add some basics of size to blog postings. Thank you, readers, for your queries.
We are fortunate to have access to a Master’s thesis1 by Olga Adriana Hernández Flores in which she details the size of many of the capillas that we have painted.
Capilla de San Isidro Labrador in the community of San Isidro de Bandita has been restored but is typical of a medium-sized capilla with a two-part nave, a facade, a bell tower and an atrium. While the terms façade, bell tower and atrium are commonly understood, the term nave needs some explanation. The nave is the body of the capilla and may consist of one, two or three joined cubes. I think you can see the two parts of the nave in the painting of San Isidro Labrador.
Dimensions for Capilla de San Isidro Labrador:
Nave (remember this capilla has two parts): 22.57 feet (6.88 meters) in length x 11.25 feet (3.43 meters) in width x 12.96 feet (3.95 meters) in height.
Façade (front): 18.04 feet (5.50 meters) x 15.58 feet (4.75 meters).
Bell tower: 12.96 feet (3.95 meters) just the bell tower; 28.54 feet (8.70 meters) in height from the ground to the top of the bell tower.
Atrium or courtyard: 37.56 feet (11.45 meters) in length x 35.99 feet (10.97 meters) in width.
The small Capilla de la Virgen de Guadalupe in Montecillo de Nieto has just one part to its nave and is essentially a cube.
We have painted some larger capillas with three parts as you can see in this painting of Capilla de San Miguel Arcangel in San Miguelito.
© 2016 Lorie Topinka
1Hernández Flores, O. (1998). Ruta de capillas en Allende, GTO. conservatión de 13 monumentos. Unpublished master´s thesis. University of Guanajuato, Guanajuato, Mexico.