I love Day of the Dead art, the calaveras (skulls) associated with the primarily Mexican holiday, Dia de los Muertos. Some people (non-Mexicans) find it creepy, depressing, or just strange but, like the holiday, that is not the intention. The holiday occurs on November 2, in conjunction with the Catholic observances of All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day (November 1 and 2). It is a day to remember friends and family who have died but it is a time of celebration, where partying is common.

Phoenix has a large Mexican-American population so celebrations of this holiday are common here and, more and more, so are displays of the art, year-round. The above mural is in the downtown Phoenix arts district which covers a fairly large area. It is by Lalo Cota, a Phoenix artist born in Mexico.

Several blocks away, on Roosevelt Row, which is probably the best-known area of the arts district is this new mural, on the side of Carly’s Bistro. Lalo painted this one with his collaborators, Pablo Luna and Thomas Marcus (aka Breeze).

I think these are very fun murals. About 2 blocks down the street, still on Roosevelt Row, in an alley next to and behind several galleries and shops, there are more Lalo Cota murals.

The sun was shining so brightly during this late afternoon that there is a glow-glare on the mural but maybe that is appropriate.

There is another Lalo Cota mural very close to these but it was extremely hot that afternoon so I decided to leave it for another day…and another post.

Do you like this sort of art or, like Tony, does it remind you of the Grateful Dead?


10 thoughts on “Calaveras

  1. A fine set of mural shots. It’s an interesting celebration. Once while I was teaching in Mexico, I saw a decorated cemetery where people were camping out overnight to be near their loved ones.


  2. Love.

    I am always amused how death is looked upon by different cultures…I think I like this one the best…
    They look like they are having a great time….and I love the very “appropriate” glow/glare.
    Very nice Candace.


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