PROJECTS: DEATH IN OAXACA
Oaxaca, oh… take me back there somebody, some day, before too long. I recently visited this Mexican state during the Day of the Dead celebrations, and these hugely creative, family oriented , warm and kind people made a big impression on me. Once a year, for several days, generations of families come together, to remember and honour those they have lost. Alters are put up in their homes – small tables come alive with colour and scent, adorned with photographs and offerings to the dead. In streets and shops, images of skeletons and the devil abound.
In the cemeteries, hundreds of families gather by candlelight around the graves, where they create intricate works of art from flowers or sand, remember and celebrate all night long with food, music, costume, laughter, and much mescal, with gifts like the loved one's favorite drink or smoke perhaps, and so many flowers. The smell of marigolds and incense will forever bring back the people of Oaxaca to me, with their strong sense of living whilst honouring the dead.