From the time he arrived in México, Pelegrín Clavé, the director of the San Carlos Academy´s painting department, favored the Historical genre, deemed paramount by traditional academicians, in his teaching. Among such topics, biblical ones -especially those pertaining to the Old Testament- were favored by Clavé, and hence heavily featured in the work of various academic painters, including Rafael Flores. The young Jesus is giving the cross He has just fashioned to His parents. Joseph, holding a saw, is looking at this cross, while Mary stares fixedly at it, setting aside Her sewing and absorbedly clasping Her hands under Her chin. It is worth noting that the basket in the lower right-hand corner contains a piece of green white and red cloth, echoing the colors that Agustín de Iturbide was to use in his banner. According to the art historian, Fausto Ramírez, the triple-colored cloth depicted here is a clear allusion to the unfulfilled ideals of the Plan de Iguala (the compromise plan establishing the principles for an independent México agreed upon between the liberals and Iturbide´s royalist conservatives, in the town of Iguala) -i.e. respect for the Catholic religion, brotherhood among Mexicans, and political independence. In Claves day, though the Academy did not look favorably on works that were open to a possible double interpretation, various students sought to circumvent censure and express their ideas. This scene alludes to unavoidable suffering such as that which Jesus foresaw as inevitable for himself. It was painted in 1857, the same year that the Mexican Constitution, which contained some of the basic liberal principles that went against the painters conservative convictions, was signed. In many ways, this work is the artistic expression of many of the prevailing preoccupations regarding the turbulent political situation in México.This painting was shown at the Academy's Xth Exhibition in December of 1857, earning the artist the first prize cum laude. It was acquired by the San Carlos Academy for exhibition there, and has hung in the MUNAL since the latter was founded in 1982. .