"Our Lives Matter: The untimely deaths of our people"
Dia de los Muertos or Day of the Dead was originally a month long celebration where the indigenous peoples of Mexico celebrated the return of their ancestors and family members who had passed away. The dead are honored through costume, lavish altars, colorful flowers, food and more. All items were gathered to help guide the dead back to our world for that limited time.
In honor of this very ancient ceremony, the artists’ vision is to provide an experience and space for people of all cultural backgrounds to participate by honoring, mourning, and celebrating their ancestors and passed loved ones together as a community. Neither artist is from Mexican background, but both artists understand the importance of celebrating and honoring the ones that came before them. "We are using the traditional Mexican foundation of this celebration and putting our own artistic twist to it.”
This years theme is "Our Lives Matter: The untimely deaths of our people". As a collective community the participants will acknowledge and mourn the deaths of identified and unidentified migrants across the globe that have left their homelands due to gang violence, extreme poverty, or life and job opportunities. The artist’s intent are to honor both the physical and spiritual forms of migration from one land to another/from one world to another and empower communities not to be divided, but to stand together and build a collective voice and proclaim "Our Lives Matter."
The artists will build an installation and community altar that will play a vital role in the viewer’s interactive experience. Space will be provided for visitors to bring their own items to be placed on the altar, as well as space on the walls surrounding the altar to write messages to their passed lost loved ones. Additional art will be on display around the room with design inspirations of the theme.
There will be a ceremonial performance and traditional blessing of the altar performed by “Cetilizti Nauchampa Quetzacoalt In Ixachiltlan“ during the opening reception. In addition, dressed in costume and makeup in traditional Dia de los Muertos fashion, Ase Music will perform dance theater from the African Diaspora.