Day of the Dead Folk Art
The folk art inspired by Day of the Dead, celebrated in Mexico and around the world, including the American Southwest, powerfully communicates the cultural traditions of this joyous holiday. As a companion volume to the authors' Day of the Dead, this book focuses on the artistic imagery of Day of the Dead, including the skulls, skeletons, and the iconic figure of Catrina, as seen in various pieces of market art, community art and contemporary art. The work and influence of important Mexican folk artists, such as Jose Guadalupe Posada and Diego Rivera, are represented and discussed.
shoulders of the form. A wire armature supports the rest of the body. Large, round eyes with curled eyelashes and an expansive grin invite smiles from onlookers. A shawl, woven with bright threads, covers her shoulders. The unique interpretations of Catrina are endless. The large hat and boa always signal her identity, but each artist has the freedom to create her image to his or her liking. A bright blue dress in contrast to a pink boa sets off this Catrina from her surroundings. The materials
Vigils Contemporary Expressions Resources Acknowledgments Many people have contributed generously to this book, sharing their advice, support, and enthusiasm. First and foremost, we are grateful to the many artisans who created the fabulous folk art featured in this title. This book is a celebration of their vision and talent. We would like to thank Gibbs Smith for giving us the opportunity to work with his highly professional staff on this project. Our editor, Bob Cooper, gave us
Aztecs participated in a festival dedicated to the dead in conjunction with the harvest. According to the accounts of early Dominican friars, the celebration involved a profusion of flowers, feasting, and dancing. Offerings to the ancestors accompanied these rituals as well. The souls of the dead were believed to return to visit the homes where they had resided. To properly welcome them, relatives provided a feast of favorite dishes, and would keep vigil through the night. The Aztecs were not
reveals intricate black designs painted on a white background, while in some areas the palette is reversed and white designs are painted on a black background. The reversal of positive and negative space adds to the complexity of the symmetrical design. Bright pink plastic jewels ornament the eyes. Carved from wood and painted with bright contrasting colors, this skeleton from San Martín Toxpalan, Oaxaca, sports a wide smile. Stripes of many colors decorate and differentiate the skeletal
who denied their own cultural heritage and embraced and imitated European style and customs. Posada’s intent was to poke fun at the ridiculous posturing of the Mexican aristocracy in the prerevolutionary era, and make the point that, in death, all social classes are equal. Later, the elegant skeleton came to be known more commonly as La Catrina, the female version of a catrín, meaning a dandy or fancy man. If José Guadalupe Posada is the father of Day of the Dead art, then it may also be said