DÍA DE LOS MUERTOS ORTHE DAY OF THE DEAD A Celebration of Life and Death
In many Latin American countries, November 1st and 2nd areimportant dates that are part of the celebration known as The Day of the Dead.
These days of celebration are to commemoratethe spirits of loved ones who have passed away.
People visit the graves of their loved ones to decorate the grave markers and clean the crypts.
People oftenconstruct altersin their homeshonoring thedead. Thesealters are knownas Ofrendas.
Ofrendas may include candles, flowers, food, water, soda, juice, and other things the deceased may have enjoyedwhile living. A picture of the dead is also usually included.
The offerings on the Ofrenda are meant to guide and rejuvenate the spirits of the dead as they return to visit with the living.On OnNovember 1st, Novemberthe spirits of 2nd, the spiritschildren of adultsreturn to visit. return to visit.
The rituals associated with The Day of the Dead areancient in origin but have evolved with time andoutside influence.• The Aztec civilization of Mesoamerica honored the dead in a month long summer celebration.• Spanish conquerors tried to erase the rituals of the Aztecs. When they failed, they combined the Aztec rituals with Catholic traditions of All Saints Day and All Souls Day.• Contemporary celebrations of The Day of the Dead are fusions of the ancient Aztec rituals and Western Catholic rituals.
The skull orskeleton is animportantmotif, orrecurringform, shape, or symbol, inthe rituals ofThe Day ofthe Deadcelebrations.
Commondecorativemotifsadorningskulls arefloraldesigns andrepetitionoflines, shapes, or colors.
Skulls made ofsugar, known ascalaveras deazucar, are made toplace on Ofrendasor to be eaten. Theyare often decoratedwith frosting andelaborate sparklingadornments. Smilingexpressions are alsoa hallmark oftraditional sugarskulls.
Effigy- A representation or image, especially sculptured, as on a monument.Elvis Presley effigiesbased on Day of theDead imagery
How can art make connectionsoutside of the art classroom?
Homework• Identify a person who has died that was important to you. This person can be a family member , a friend, or even someone famous that has influenced you personally. A musician, athelete, or other iconic role model is acceptable. There are no repeats and your teacher has a sign-up sheet.• Gather 5 important biographical details about this person. These 5 details should be at least two or more sentences each. Ex. Uncle Henry wore plaid pants all of the time. His pants always made me laugh and he knew it. He was so kind to me and every time I see someone wearing plaid pants I think of Uncle Henry.• Obtain an image or draw a representation of the person from a photograph. Multiple images are recommended.