Each art piece and installation will represent one aspect of the tradition of Day of the Dead. Depending on the location, you can expect an exhibit, with a collection of photography a printmaking or art installation.
The installations are historically thematic. They showcase both Oregon and international artists. Some (Ofrendas) installations have an area like bulletin board. These are places where groups, individuals and the local community in general are invited to place their own personal offerings for the celebration.
This design and final presentation of each installation largely will depend on the space available at the location. Some pieces will be displayed in venues, others in shipping containers that have more amenities than smaller ones. These installations will have interactive features that create a fun and educational experience. Teaching about the origins of the tradition, its history and contemporary evolution.
A pre-Hispanic experience. This installation explores the mythology of the ancient peoples of Mesoamerica, the roots that gave origin to today’s traditions. In addition, it features “Working of the worms” Mythology and the ancient history of the Pre-hispanic world — from the mother cultures such as Olmec, Mayan and Zapotec, to the Nahua people.
Day of All Saints
New management new date. The history of the celebration of All Saints’ Day begins in the days of Christian Rome. During the 8th century, Pope Gregory III ordered that All Saints would be celebrated on each 1st day of November.
Franciscan order founded the College of Tlatelolco, where young men would follow a program used in Franciscan Seminaries. Aside from learning about science and theology, there was a focus on preserving the knowledge and history of the Aztec civilization. The objective was to prepare an indigenous clergy; however, no indigenous priests would ever emerge from that institute.
The tradition talks about the three deaths. This photography exhibit is based on the traditional syncretic understanding of the death and memory of an individual. This happens in spaces dedicated to those who have departed.
Retrospective of one of the most influential Mexican artists. José Guadalupe Posada Aguilar was a Mexican lithographer.
Contemporary perspective of the tradition as world heritage. Dia de Muertos has became an international phenomenon. From advertising campaigns to popular films the tradition is celebrated and accepted by Mexican diaspora outside of Mexico.
Death and Humor
It is a funny thing to be dead. For the ancestors in the Mesoamerican world, death was considered a part of life. Humor around death has always been a characteristic trait of Mexican culture. The representation of skulls and skeletons has always been playful; this humor touches many aspects of the traditional and of a more contemporary Mexican culture.
Tradition is Sweet
Food has always been the main element in the Mexican ofrendas (altars). however, Other foods like wheat (bread) was not part of the indigenous foods placed in pre-Hispanic offerings. Nevertheless, that changed with the colonial times until today. This exhibit explores all that is delicious about the Day of the Dead.
Working of the Worms
Mythology and the ancient history of the Pre-hispanic world; from the mother cultures such as Olmec, Mayan and Zapotec, to the Nahua people. This pre-Hispanic experience is in addition to the Mictlan installation.
Día de Muertos it is one of the most important celebrations in Mexican culture. This tradition has evolved organically however, the essence and heart of the celebration remain untouched. These art installations are not the only display of the tradition in Oregon. Many people have adopted the tradition and celebrate in their own way.
Each site will display a map that will mark dates, times and locations of individuals or groups celebrating the tradition in their community that will be open to the public. The art installations will be open the last two weeks of October 2023 until the night of November 2.