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October 2009
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CityLink Seattle

Dia de Muertos Celebration, Oct. 31 – Nov. 1

Safeco Insurance Festál:  Dia de Muertos – A Mexican Celebration to Remember Our Departed features brilliant sand painting, community altars, sugar skulls, special foods, candles and acclaimed Mexican artists, Oct. 31, 12 noon – 8 p.m., and Nov. 1, 12 noon – 6 p.m., at Center House.

Celebrating life through death and the communion where the spiritual comes close to the world, the Dia de Muertos or “Day of the Dead” festival helps us to remember that nothing is eternal. Indigenous and Spanish roots intertwine in artisanry and tradition as renowned artists create works reflecting the Mexican cultural links between the living and the dead. This event highlights the life-affirming creativeness of the Mexican people with crafts and a procession to remember lost loved ones.

 Special features this year include:

  •  A community altar where festival-goers may contribute flowers, poems and pictures (copies) of departed loved ones.
  •  Traditional altars and a traditional Mexican cemetery decorated as it would be to celebrate Dia de Muertos in some towns in México.
  • A monumental sand painting (tapete) created, Oct. 27 – 30, by Mexican artist Isaac Hernandez Ruiz together with other artists and community members to reaffirm the ephemeral nature of life. The tapete will be on display, Oct 31 to Nov. 2.
  •  Traditional artisanry demonstration by three renowned artisans from the region of Michoacán.
  •  Short films and animations presented by young Mexican cinematographers and animators depicting the unique relationship that Mexicans have with La Muerte (Death) every day of their lives. 
  • A full program of entertainment both days, culminating on Oct. 31, 7 p.m. with a candle lit procession from Center House to the International Fountain, where participants may share in remembering loved ones or others.

Did you know?  The director of the upcoming film, The Hobbit, is Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro. Born in 1964 in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, del Toro is well known for his film creations in the genres of comic adaptations, historical fantasy and horror inspired by his culture’s relationship between the living and the dead. Co-founder of the Guadalajara-based Mexican Film Festival, del Toro is one of Mexico’s most visible and highly honored film visionaries. He moved from Mexico to Los Angeles in 1998. Following The Hobbit, del Toro is scheduled through 2017 to direct four films for Universal Studios.

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