Day of the Dead Ofrenda installations
Celebrating the Mexican ancient tradition, of honoring our love ones who passed away
I've been in love with the Mexican Dia de Muertos tradition since I was a little girl.
This celebration was very special to me, because it meant family time and special preparations for this big holiday.
I remember going to the market with my mom and my aunts and my dad, to get all the supplies for the Ofrenda and the special meal that we prepared for our loved ones. This was probably one of the best moments (other than building the ofrenda) of the end of October, each year.
There was a dedicated space in the main market that was full of flowers, candy and other colorful items dedicated to this date, as well as copal (Aztek incense) and even traditional toys and other decorative ceramic pieces that I used to collect and love.
The celebration at home took a couple days, on October 28 the shopping and preparations and the reminder of why we celebrate this holiday, on October 29, getting candy and toys for the "little soul" o los "Muertos chicos" for setting up the begging of the Ofrenda on the 30th. Giving candy and or fruit to the children that come to the door on that date, asking for "La calavera" (kind of trick or treating).
On November 1st, we used to welcome our adult loved ones by setting up their favorite foods, pictures, memories, and favorite objects in our Ofrendas. We shared memories and historias and other traditions about them and how thankful we were of having them in our lives.
November 2nd was to honor all the souls. We cleaned and decorated the graveyards with flowers, then went home to light candles, visited neighbors to see their Ofrendas and share meals.
After I joined a traditional Aztek Dance group named Kalpulli Tlahuikayotl, I started learning about the origins of this tradition, and the history behind it. I learn the name of the Ofrendas in the Aztek language and learn how to set up an Aztek Ofrenda on the floor with the whole community of dancers and elders. All this memories translate into my artwork now, and those memories make me proud to share and teach my roots and the roots of the Dia de Muertos with our community here in Detroit.