2008 Photo Contest, Arts and Entertainment, 3rd prize

Cristina Garcia Rodero

Magnum Photos

01 January, 2005

An old woman lies in a pool of water - an important element in spiritual cleansing and a symbol of the María Lionza cult's closeness to nature. The folk religion of María Lionza has one of the largest followings of any sect in Venezuela. It is a blend of African, indigenous and Roman Catholic beliefs, and is popular across all strata of society. María Lionza is revered as a goddess of nature, love, peace and harmony, and followers believe she still lives on Montana de Sorte together with many important spirits. Devotees travel to the mountain to pay homage to her and commune with the spirit world.

About the photographer

Cristina Garcia Rodero

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