Saturday, August 14, 2010

The St. Francis De Asis Church

We have been on the road again so I haven't put
 up a post in what seems like forever.
We are in the Taos area and last week we stopped in Ranchos de Taos
 to see the the San Francisco De Asis church.

On July 12th I did a post about an article in the Santa Fe New Mexican
 Please click on that and then click on the article as it was very interesting.

This is truly an amazing building and still in use today,
 and as the article states it is still being lovingly cared for by the parishioners.

Of course the building is all adobe
 but what is even more significant is that the outside
 is covered in adobe mud not the typical cement stucco.

In a building like this the cement stucco traps moisture
 behind the stucco seriously degrading the adobe.
 Mud stucco allows the skin to " breathe " releasing the moisture.
The only requirement is the mud must be re-applied every year.

The back side of the church is the part that many of us are familiar with
 from the famous photos by among others Ansel Adams and Paul Strand
 as well as paintings by Georgia O'Keefe and many others.
The form is spectacular and it is not hard to see why artists are attracted to it.

The mud and straw create a beautiful color and texture.

An interesting feature I had not noticed before
 are the 3 splash guards underneath the canales.

Water from off the roof falls into these splash guards
 which protect the walls of the church from splashing water.
Very clever.

My next post will be about the adobe buildings 
surrounding the Ranchos de Taos Plaza out in front of the church.

My other posts on the plaza are:
Mudding The St Francis De Assi Church,
Ranchos De Taos Plaza,
and Windows And Doors At Ranchos De Taos Plaza.