Retablo, derived from the Latin term "retro tabulum" or "behind the altar," traditionally refered to devotional images typically placed behind an altar or table. Deeply rooted in Spanish colonial history, the folk art originated with painted, sculpted or carved religious images. The Peruvian version of retablo incorporates detailed, three-dimensional scenes in a shadow box and can include religious scenes or depictions of daily life.
The use of wood for the outside box remained, but other materials, such as gypsum, clay, or a potato-gypsum-clay paste mix, were increasingly used for the figures because of their ease of handling and durability. Check Our Gallery for larger photographs.