Maude Kerns Art Center Presents
Día de los Muertos:
Day of the Dead
October 16 - November 6
Opening Fiesta Reception:
Friday, October 16, 6 - 9pm
The Maude Kerns Art Center celebrates the 22nd annual Día de los Muertos Exhibit with artwork, altars, traditional dancing, music, and refreshments at the Opening Reception Fiesta on Friday, October 16, from 6 – 9 pm. The 2015 exhibit features the work of 24 artists from four states and Mexico and includes mixed media, acrylic paintings, mosaic, linocut prints, collage, and pen and ink and colored pencil drawings inspired by this Mexican holiday.
This year, the Art Center features six altars created by individuals and groups in the community, including an altar by youth members of Amigos Multicultural Services Center, Juventud FACETA, longtime participants in the Día de los Muertos Exhibit. Another altar honors the Art Center’s namesake, Maude I. Kerns, marking 50 years after her death in October of 1965. The Día de los Muertos Exhibit is on view through November 6.
Join us at the Opening Reception Fiesta on Friday, October 16, from 6 – 9 pm. The Fiesta features a performance of Mexican regional dances by Ballet Folklórico Alma de México, a group of dancers ranging in age from three to seventeen years old, directed by Monica Olvera.
This year’s jurors were Karen Alvarado, artist and Día de los Muertos Exhibit collaborator, who specializes in the arts, galleries, and developing arts centers around the country; Rocio Diaz, born and raised in Mexico and frequent Dia de los Muertos Exhibit altar designer and collaborator; and Carolyn Scott Kortge, former editor and current writer for The Register-Guard, published author, and longtime traveler and collector of Mexican and South American folk art.
Canadian artist Kathy Braceland, who currently lives in Trout Lake, Washington, is a newcomer to the Art Center’s exhibit. She displays five pieces in ink on illustrator board, all depicting playful skeletons engaged in different activities. Braceland’s popular “skeleton art” has been showcased in the Edmonton Journal, the Edmonton Examiner, and a number of newspapers across the U.S.
Jesús Cruz, Jr., of Riverside, California, a past participant in the Día de los Muertos Exhibit, was the featured artist this year at the Riverside Art Museum. In the 2015 Día de los Muertos Exhibit, he shows five of his bold black and white linocuts that are part of a series called “Maracas Muertas.” Cruz says: “In death, our body is gone, but our life keeps on making noise and music by what we have left behind.”
Jean Foss moved to Oaxaca, Mexico fourteen years ago. Her home and studio are located in the rural village of San Andrés Huayapam. In her adopted country, she tries “to capture the vibrancy of the land and the vitality of its ancient culture.” For this year’s show she exhibits two unusual pieces: a brightly painted ceramic mezcal bottle and a hand-hewn wooden trough painted with an image of a woman selling marigolds, the traditional flowers of the dead.
Springfield artist Anthony D. Hensley has been a longtime participant in the Art Center’s Día de los Muertos Exhibit. In 2015 he shows three oil on canvas paintings. For every exhibit Hensley finds a way to incorporate an image of the Art Center within one painting. This year is no exception. Look for a fine rendering of the Art Center in Hensley’s “La Pamloma de Noé” (The Dove of Noah).
Another highlight of the Art Center’s annual exhibit is the Day of the Dead Gift Shop, which is stocked with authentic art objects collected from Mexican artists by Suzanne Algara of Buganvilla Imports. Suzanne, who was born in Mexico, returns to her native country two to three times per year and works with artists from many different Central Mexican states.