Pieces from Diego's collection would also appear in many of her paintings or serve as models or inspiration for a painting. Her 1932 painting "My Birth" in which she paints " how I imagined I was born ", a statue of the Aztec Goddess Tlazolteolt may have been the model. In "My Nurse and I" from 1937, the "Nurse" is wearing a Teotihuacán mask and the "Madonna and Child" pose may have been modeled after a pre-Columbian statue. Pre-Columbian artifacts can be found in other paintings as well: "The Four Inhabitants of Mexico City" (1938), "Girl with Death Mask" (1938), and "Self-Portrait with Small Monkey" (1945).
Like the Christian scholar Origen (184?–254?), Augustine interpreted scripture allegorically. The Bible, he believed, had been veiled by God in order to exercise those seeking Him. He believed that the Bible's ambiguities provided people with ever-new facets of truth to be discovered. He saw human consciousness as the psychoanalyst Freud would see messages in dreams: truth not as simple and direct but diffracted into obscure and intricate symbols needing interpretation. Augustine believed that people had a repressed awareness, a loss of direct knowledge, resulting from humanity's fall at the Garden of Eden, which had left Adam and Eve able to communicate only by the clumsy artifice of language and gestures. Believing that God was the source of all knowledge, Augustine believed that direct awareness was a gift of God and that the gap between direct awareness and human consciousness was mercifully bridged by the Bible and its proliferation of imagery.