Tag Archives: Dia de los Muertos

2023 Dia de los Muertes Art Festival

Last Saturday afternoon I ventured to downtown Tulsa to Living Arts Tulsa which was putting on their annual Dia de los Muertos Art Festival. I missed all the performances that happened the night before but they still had the altars to loved ones that community members built.

Dia de los Muertos, also known as the Day of the Dead. Is a Mexican holiday where families welcome back the souls of loved ones for a few days of visiting and feasting. It is usually celebrated October 31 to November 2.

As part of the holiday altars (or ofrendas) are built to honor family members. There are conventions for the altars (check here) but it seems more and more the ofrendas are departing from the “rules” and the emphasis is showing the departed, their interests and passions.

One sees lots of marigolds in these ofrendas. Some believe that orange is the only color that departed souls can see. Many ofrendas create a path of marigold flowers from the floor to the altar and then to the top of the altar. Those are to help guide souls to the altar and then on to heaven.

The brightly colored tissue paper with patterns cut into it is known as Papel Picado. It symbolizes the union between life and death.

Sometimes favorite clothing and beverages are on display.

You see lots of pastries and candles.

Photographs, favorite drinks are displayed as well.

Somebody constructed an ofrenda in honor of the recently deceased singer Jimmy Buffett. A guitar, music, and sandals were some of the objects on display.

I didn’t build an ofrenda but I did use a snapchat filter to celebrate.

I really enjoyed the whole show.

I am linking with My Corner of the World

2022 Dia de Los Muertos Art Festival at Living Arts Tulsa


Living Arts hosts normally hosts at Dia de los Muertos Arts Festival during or close to the holiday of November 1 and 2. Of course, nothing since 2020 has been normal. This year I wasn’t able to attend the festival which includes art and performances and food because of the weather but I did make it to the gallery to see the Ofrendas or altars to the dead.


I love the ofrendas. They are made to honor the dead. They have a lot of symbolism in terms of the colors and decorations used. Here is a great article about the symbolism. Many of the altars adhere to the pattern others do not so much.


I look at them as stories of a person’s life as told by the loved ones. Religious faith, professions, hobbies, loved ones, favorite foods, sports teams, and other facets of a person’s life is displayed. Obviously almost all of these people were much loved when they were alive.


So I try to never miss these. They are wonderful works of art with meaning.


This ofrenda was finished off by sand on the floor below with a beach scene. That could be mine, or a small trail in the woods.


Some ofrendas were communal such as this one offered up students at a local school or who made painted rocks in memory of a loved one of theirs that they had lost.


Dallas Cowboys merchandise was displayed on three of the altars. If somebody makes me an altar, they could add that.


Outside, there are murals in honor of deceased people.

RIP Frida Kahlo, what an amazing artist.

Have you thought about an altar for somebody. I have. I think it would be interesting and emotional coming up with a design and gathering the various elements and then putting it together. I think it is good to remember people. I am not one who wants to get rid of reminders of people. Yes, sure that can be sad, but what about all the happy memories?

I am linking with My Corner of the World. Go check it out.