Praying Corn Sellers

Praying Corn Sellers

With sacks of corn piled at lower left, Mexican corn sellers kneel and pray outside a church.

For Mexicans, maize is not a crop but a deep cultural symbol intrinsic to daily life. Corn was domesticated from a grass called teocintle by the peoples of Meso-America approximately 10,000 years ago. Often referred to as humanity’s greatest agronomic achievement, maize is now grown all over the world. The yellow corn commonly found in the United States pales in comparison to the shapes, sizes, and colors of the traditional maize varieties cultivated by the indigenous peoples of Mexico. The ears of corn may range from a couple of inches to a foot long, in colors that include white, red, yellow, blue, and black. Some varieties even have an assortment of colors on one ear.

Excerpt: The People of the Corn, by Christina Santini published in June, 2010 on the Cultural Survival website (Advancing Indigenous Peoples’ Rights & Cultures Worldwide Since 1972)

Praying Corn Sellers

Image Dimensions25.7 x 33.6 cm

Print Notes


Exhibitions | Collections

-“Praying Corn Sellers”: AD&A Museum UC Santa Barbara: 1986.2 (The Carolyn and Edwin Gledhill Photography Collection)

-“Corn Sellers, Kneeling at Church Door While Mass is Chanted Inside” 1984.0023.0011: California Museum of Photography, Riverside, California (UCR Arts)


December, 2023 from John Moran Auctioneers, Inc. Monrovia, CA: The Collection of Frederick W. Davis: Lot 1282.