Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Sand Sculptures of Oaxaca

One of the surprises for me about Dio de Los Muertos in Oaxaca was the tradition of making sand sculptures.  Enormous sand sculptures.  Some were easily more than 50 feet high and 25 ft wide. 

     They started bringing the sand and the bricks to contain it on the 29th of October.  By November 1st several sculptures/paintings were well under way both around the zocalo and on one of the main streets leading down to it.  Of all the questions I asked I only got one definitive answer about the tradition.  The Sand Sculptures/Painting were done by students of the local art schools. 

 Some were religious in nature but most were depictions of huge skeletons.  Occasionally mystical creatures were drawn. 
     Primarily red, blue and yellow were used but occasionally a golden glitter was added, especially when the drawing was religious in nature. 
     Some were pretty funny like this last one of a skeleton crawling out of his world and back into that of the living.  Beer in hand, smile on his face, it looks like he just might make it back. 

     One thing is certain, this particular sculpture got his picture taken often during the course of dio de los Muertos.