November 4, 2001

Subject: Saludos and an Interview Request
Date: Sun, 4 Nov 2001 18:16:59 -0800 (PST)
From: Estela Reyes "López" <>

Nov. 4, 2001

Dear Ms. Lopez,

Let me begin by congratulating you on your work, your tenacity, and your determination to keep Our Lady in public display, despite the controversies. As a writer, I can only imagine how stressful it might be to face such a backlash and public attack for something I labored so long to create. I can only salute you.

But the reason for my letter isn't just to offer you my thanks as a fellow artist. It's to ask you to share a bit of your time with me in an interview. I'm in the process of writing a column for a Texas newspaper, La Voz de Uvalde, on the changing image and indianization of La Virgen de Guadalupe. The column itself will focus on how many in the Chicano/a community are now referring to her not as Guadalupe, but as Tonantzin, as our ancestors first called her. I would greatly appreciate your perspective as an artist, and someone who has dealt with her image, for this piece.

In addition to La Voz de Uvalde, the column will also be published on to support that non-profit website's free content efforts. Please let me know at your earliest convenience if you might have some time later this week for a phone interview. If at all  possible, I would also appreciate your passing this message along to the young woman who posed for Our Lady, Raquel Salinas. It's my understanding that she, too, has some interesting perspectives on how the image of La Virgen de Guadalupe became an affirmation of her own femininity and healing process. Please feel free to respond to me by e-mail at If you wish to contact me by phone, you can reach me at home or on my cell phone. I will promptly return your call so you don't get hit with the long distance charges.

Again, thank you for your time and attention to this e-mail.

Estela Reyes López

"No nation can be conquered until its women's hearts lay bleeding on the ground." -- Cherokee Proverb
"Never think that war, no matter how necessary, nor how justified, is not a crime."-- Ernest Hemingway