”Mexicans not only accept the inevitability of death, they embrace its power as being essential to the fabric of life.”
What is Dia de los Muertos?
Once a year, around the time we call Halloween, the Mexicans celebrate ‘Dia de los Muertos’ (Day of the Dead). Over a three day period the Mexicans celebrate their dead, they remember their ancestors by inviting them back to this world, eating food at their gravesides, creating altars(Ofrendas) to their memory and inviting them through their doors back into their lives.
It’s not just a celebration of death, it’s a celebration of life, colour, arts and music, a fiesta to honour those who have passed.
Colourful carnival characters and folkart arise in the streets, giant skulls, flowers, lavish processions, Mariachi bands, brass bands, sugar coated skulls, pinatas and fireworks.
The Mexican night of the dead ball is fast becoming Novembers annual event across the South west. The Mexican ball stems from a fascination with Mexican culture and specifically Dia de los Muertos’ – ‘The day of the dead’.
Why this kind of event?
We felt that we needed a different response to death in the western culture and especially in the uk, where death is often shoved out of the way and dealt with in an almost victorian way. We want to be able to offer people something more liberating as opposed to those Halloween greys. We want to inspire people so they feel allowed to celebrate their ancestors in a life affirming fiesta and are able to invite the dead as honoured guests.
MEXICAN BALL INTERVIEWS
Artist Karen Adabie interviewed people who attended that last Mexican Ball. Karen asked what deceased person had they brought to the ball? what follows is a fascinating insight into how people respond to this reverence and remembering of those who have past. Soundtrack and edit by Lee Hodges.