Learn About Day of the Dead
The Day of the Dead is one of the most important holidays in Mexico and the Latino community. ArtOrg works with local and regional communities on celebrations and art events related to Dia de los Muertos. We do this through partnerships with many groups and people, including Latino organizations such as Grupo Soap del Corazon and sponsoring venues such as the Plains Art Museum of Fargo, North Dakota. We try hard to facilitate understanding of this holiday through production of original art by Latino artists. We urge you to look though the art that has been produced, watch the videos of the events and experts we have sponsored, and talk directly with people who celebrate the holiday themselves to learn more!
The artist statements from the 2009 Plains Art Museum Day of the Dead project are written on each of the respective artist pages from that project, and also contained in the video of that event. They provide a particularly good insight to many aspects of Day of the Dead.
The rightmost column on this page shows the following: 1) artists talking about their Day of the Dead images in the context of large steamroller prints in Fargo, North Dakota at the Plains Art Museum, 2) a celebration of Day of the Dead that was held in 2006 in Northfield, Minnesota and attracted a crowd of 400 people, 3) a poetry reading by the renowned Ray Gonzalez about his Day of the Dead thoughts, 4) a talk by Juanita Garciagodoy exploring Day of the Dead imagery and traditions with an emphasis on the conflicts between Halloween and Day of the Dead, 5) a photoset from artists Douglas Padilla and Xavier Tavera as they traveled to Mexico to experience firsthand Day of the Dead traditions as a part of a grant from the Jerome Foundation, and lastly curriculum from the Minneapolis Institute of Arts on Mexican Printmaking.
In 2006, ArtOrg teamed with Grupo Soap del Corazon, a Minneapolis-based Latino artist group, to pull together this wonderful series of events. A special thanks go to Doug Padilla and Xavier Tavera, without whom our Northfield celebration would not have happened. A unique aspect of the Day of the Dead print set created in 2006 is the long print. Defined as print number 1 of 5, each artist woodblock was laid end-to-end and a 104-foot-long version of the project was created. ArtOrg retains this print for display at local and regional celebrations. Several of the paper prints have also been displayed elswhere, for example in October of 2007 one of Tina O’Brien’s individual steamroller prints was at the National Museum of Mexican Art in Chicago for a Day of the Dead celebration there. Several prints also hung at the Minnesota-based Medtronic for their 2007 Hispanic Heritage Month. An entire set of the 2006 prints numbering 2/5 was accessioned by the Weisman Art Museum at the University of Minnesota, and will likely come out from time to time in exhibits pulled from their permanent collection. There are many photos of these 2006 Northfield events on Flickr.
- 2012 Thousand Print Summer
- 2009 Dia de los Muertos-Plains Art Museum
- 2006 Northfield Day of the Dead Steamroller Prints
- MIA Mexican Printmaking Curriculum (Spanish)
- MIA Mexican Printmaking Curriculum (English)
- Digging The Days of the Dead Book
- Grupo Soap del Corazon
- Juanita Garciagodoy
- Ray Gonzalez
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Artists Talk Art at
Plains Art Museum (14 min)
2006 Northfield Celebration (1 min)
Day of the Dead Poetry (58 min)
Juanita Garciagodoy: Reading Calaveras, Pushing Limits (67 min)
Padilla/Tavera Jerome Photos