Celebrate el Día de los Muertos with the Arts Council of Princeton! Join us for socially-distanced, outdoor workshops to learn about this culturally rich holiday and the traditional folk arts associated with Day of the Dead. Not only will you learn a new folk art craft, but you’ll be invited to display your work in our Day of the Dead Exhibition in our Taplin Gallery from November 1-14!
El Día de los Muertos is observed in Mexico and throughout the world this time of year, where family and friends gather to remember and honor those who have died. Traditions connected with the holiday include building private altars using sugar skulls, marigolds, and favorite foods of the deceased to celebrate their lives!
Workshops will be held following all mandated guidelines, including proper social-distancing, temperature checks, and of course, masks are a must! Some workshops will require a few things brought from home to help ensure safety.The ACP will provide hand sanitizer for frequent use. In the event of inclement weather, workshops will be held in our spacious Solley Theater.
Saturday, October 10 | 3-5pm
Papel Picado & Paper Flowers
The art of cutting paper banners is a true talent in Mexico, traditionally done with chisels. We will make the festive tissue paper banners that flutter over every plaza, shop, and doorway during Day of the Dead.
Flowers are also a large part of this holiday, gathered in bunches and placed at cemeteries. Learn how to make a bouquet of the brightly colored cempoalxochitl flowers the Arts Council has used to decorate our altar arch for our annual festival. Register HERE!
Saturday, October 17 | 3-5pm
Nichos & Calaveras
A nicho box, or simply ‘nicho’, is a three-dimensional box used as a small, portable shrine to an important figure or loved one. Create your own contemporary Día de los Muertos nicho using whimsical accents, collage, paint, glitter, and other embellishments. Participants are encouraged to make the nicho their own by bringing old photos, trinkets, or artwork along with them.
Jose Guadlupe Posada was a Mexican lithographer who created Mexico’s most famous calavera, La Calavera Catrina, for posters, prints and other images. Catrina has become a beloved figure and iconic symbol of Day of the Dead. Learn the history behind skulls and skeletons as a representative image for Day of the Dead and embellish not only your own Catrina, but additional skeleton and skull projects. Register HERE!
Saturday, October 24 | 3-5pm
Everyone loves making and decorating sugar skulls for Day of the Dead. In our previous festivals we have made hundreds! Learn how to mix the sugar with meringue powder to pack into a traditional mold. Royal icings are used to embellish your skull which is typically placed on the altar or ofrenda. Wear clothing you won’t mind getting messy, and see how magical a sugar skull can be! Please note: students will need to bring their own mixing bowl and spatula. Register HERE!
Saturday, November 7 | 2-4pm
Traditions of Day of the Dead for Child & Caregiver
This workshop is designed for a child and a parent or caregiver to complete projects together. Receive a tour of our vibrant El Día de los Muertos gallery installation and learn the customs of this colorful, art-filled holiday! Then join our instructor for creating your own nichos, papel picados, Calaveras, or paper flowers. These projects will certainly become treasured family heirlooms for many Day of the Dead celebrations to come. Register HERE!