30 October 2007

El Dia de Muertos: Images

The streets flow over with excitement as Oaxaca prepares for el Dia de Muertos next weekend. Fireworks go off nightly, though that's hardly limited to the holidays in Oaxaca. Brass bands and throngs of dancers fill the zocalo while religious ceremonies overflow the sanctuary of the great cathedral at Santo Domingo and into the front courtyard, illuminating the night. Colorful altars, populated with images or likenesses of deceased loved ones and adorned with offerings of chocolate, candies, cigarettes, mescal, sweet breads, flowers, fruits, toys, trinkets and more are installed in homes, restaurants, bars, galleries, souvenir shops.

Here two men in the zocalo labor over one of the many sand illustrations that have cropped up before the holiday.

And here are some striking images from the Alcala, one of the wide stone avenues in the historic center of town. These displays are made almost entirely with sand, though some incorporate maize, flower petals and more. Enjoy!