Botanica Los Angeles

Material expressions of spiritual belief are integral components of the Los Angeles landscape. Cathedrals, temples, churches, and shrines dot the city, but they are not the only sites where notions of the divine, or at least the supernatural, are made visible. Reflecting the broad ethnic and cultural reconfiguration of Southern California in recent years, botanicas have emerged as one of the most frequent purveyors of sacramental items. This book explores these fascinating venues and their role in transmitting, transforming, and critiquing traditional faiths. An ever-evolving combination of spiritual center, religious supply house, and alternate healthcare facility, the botanica is generally associated with folk Catholicism and other Latin American religious traditions. Vivid photographs and essays describe these sites of spirit-infused artistry, ceremonial activity, and community building.

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Ryan Clover-Owens

I'm on a mission to prove that we can live in a society that reconciles with our history, respects difference, cherishes the land and animals, and can create solutions to the challenges we face.