Dia de los Muertos and Art Stroll at Art More Place

November 2, 2015

Photo by Jessana DeAngelis
Participants mill around before the alter stroll at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

It is like walking into Kindergarten all over again, even down to the cubbyholes.

Photo by Jessana L. DeAngelis
Cubby holes at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL, November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

A feeling of being 5 years old with the whole world at your feet, and you want to color it. Color it with all the crayons, paint, and markers you can get your hands on, in every spectrum of the rainbow imaginable. Color it using your wide, wild imagination, set free as if you are coloring for the first time.

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Ofrendas at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

It is the excitement of the first day of kindergarten all over again every time I walk into the Art More Place, but today I am here for a much more solemn reason, the Dia de los Muertos and Alter Stroll.

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Lights were dimmed for the alter stroll at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a Spanish holiday celebrated around the world, which honors both religious saints and those loved ones who have passed before us. An ofrenda (a Spanish offering) is a collection of objects placed on an altar to honor a loved one who has passed on the annual Day of the Dead celebration.

Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Trinkets and cherished items placed on the ofrenda in honor of a loved one at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Inviting the spirit of the loved one back for Dia de los Muertos, at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

Alters can be small or quite elaborate affairs, but either way, they welcome your loved one back for the day to celebrate. 

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Lit up ofrenda at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Photo by Jessana L. DeAngelis
Comfort items on the ofrenda invite the spirit to rest after their long journey back to our realm from the spirit world at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

Loved ones place photos, trinkets, cherished possessions, and comfort items of those who they are welcoming back from the spirit world on their altars, as well as food and lots of candles. Altars may even include soap and water for the spirits to use to wash up with after their long journey back to the land of the living.

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An ofrenda is usually 3 tiers high, each tier representing a different level to honor the loved one back at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

The ofrenda’s displayed at Art More Place today were both beautiful and touching.

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Ofrenda at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
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Ofrenda honoring a family and it’s Italian tradition at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

As we strolled passed the altars, listening to each creator talk about their loved one/s who they were welcoming and honoring with their objects and offerings, it was an extremely moving experience, the atmosphere somehow solemn but yet full of gratitude and joy for being able to reconnect with, and share with others the beauty of, their loved one.

Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Sherri Otcenasek lights a candle in preparation for the alter stroll at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Sherri honors her best friend with her ofrenda at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

You could almost reach out and touch the spirit’s that were visiting, enjoying all the attention they were getting, and blessing us with their presence.

Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
The spirits felt close at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

Sherri Otcenasek, owner of the Art More Place, created and hosted this fabulous and touching celebration. 

Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Sherri Otcenasek, owner of Art More Place in Melbourne, FL, Dia de los Muertos and Alter Stroll, November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

Festivities included an artist from Cheerioo Grams Entertainment painting sugar skull faces onto those both young and old, a table with coloring book pages of owls and sugar skulls and various media to color with, as well as some snacks and some very delicious homemade empanadas to munch on (they went fast!).

Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Sugar skull face painting provided by Cheerio Gram Entertainment at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
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An area was provided for participants to place their mementos or pictures of loved ones for the occasion, at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Snacks were provided, the pumpkin empanada’s went quick at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

In addition, in the center of the altar stroll was an island displaying samples of the art that you could create under the guidance of several of the amazing artists that offer classes at Art More Place.

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Local artists were showcased at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
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The artists showcased offer classes at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL. November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
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Unique art classes are offered at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL. November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

If something struck your fancy, you could sign up to be notified of future classes and information from that artist.

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Participants were able to sign up for classes with the artists at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
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Fabric doll making was a popular class to sign up for at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
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There are many classes to choose from at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL. November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

If you are interested in attending a class or an event at the Art More Place, or for further information, you can find Sherri and her crew at www.artmoreplace.com.

Photo by J. L. DeAngelis
Sherri Otcenasek and some of her artists at at Art More Place in Melbourne, FL for Dia de los Muertos on November 1, 2015. Photo by J. L. DeAngelis

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