Art station participants celebrate Dia de los Muertos

Alena Naiden, Staff Writer

Open doors at the Euphrat Museum and green balloons near the entrance welcomed visitors to come in and get warm on a rainy De Anza Flea Market day on Saturday Nov. 1.

Inside was a community art station where people of different ages and cultures joined to enjoy the art, design sugar skulls, and celebrate the Day of the Dead.

Diana Argabrite, director of the Arts and School program, one of the organizers of the event, led visitors on tours of the De Anza/Foothill Art Faculty and Staff Show which is on display until Dec. 7.

Argabrite and Lydia Sanchez, both artist/instructors for the Euphrat Museum, invited guests to decorate sugar skulls with colorful beads and glitter.

While people were working, Sanchez told them about traditional Mexican celebration of the Day of the Dead, “Dia de los Muertos” in Spanish.

The story was that on this day, people who have died come back down to Earth and celebrate. Their children bring them food and gifts, dance with them and make sugar skulls in honor of the dead.

“There is nothing to be afraid of in this celebration of people who were here before,”
Sanchez said.

Every time a guest finished a skull decoration, it was time to ring the bell and to think about people who had passed away, inviting them to Earth.

Regardless of the mystic component, the room was full of children’s laughter and a sweet candy smell.

“I’ve never done this before even though I’ve been taking Spanish for two years,” said Breanna Thomas, a student at Adrian C. Wilcox High School.

Her brother, Brian Thomas, shared his feelings: “It was awesome! I had a lot of fun. It’s very creative!”

Sanchez said, “The idea was to bring people from all cultures to the traditional celebration of Dia de los Muertos.”