A Brief History of Bloomington's Dia de los Muertos Community Altar:
The idea for an Annual Community Altar for Bloomington, IN was first conceived of by Jaime Sweany and Michael Redman. The altar celebrates the lives of deceased loved ones whose lives hold meaning to friends and family in our community.
Each year, community members are invited to add gifts to the altar in honor of their deceased loved ones over the course of the exhibit. During this Mexican holiday, it is customary to leave those who have preceded us in death small offerings of items they would have enjoyed during their lifetime; thus nurturing the memory of their lives and letting them know they have not been forgotten and remain a part of our lives today. Each year we build the Community Altar on the foundation of the previous years' offerings.
The Altar was installed annually at Wandering Turtle Art Gallery & Gifts from 2006-2010. In 2011 it was hosted by Carol Hedin at Sublime Designs Art Gallery & Gifts.
2012 marks the 7th Annual Dia de los Muertos Community Altar installation. This year's altar will be curated by Rachel DiGregorio and Michael Redman with support from Sweany Artworks/Wandering Turtle Art Gallery On-Line. We wish to sincerely thank the Mathers Museum of World Cultures and Sarah Hatcher for hosting the altar this year and continuing this meaningful and festive Bloomington tradition.
Exhibit dates are October 16 - November 4.
A CLOSING reception will be held First Friday, November 2, 5 - 8 p.m.
This year, additional activities include: Halloween Family Fun Fest-Day of the Dead
Sunday, October 28, 2 to 4 p.m.
The Museum's annual Halloween celebration will explore activities and traditions surrounding the Day of the Dead. The event will be free and open to the public.
Parking-Free visitor parking is available by the Indiana Avenue lobby entrance. Metered parking is available at the McCalla School parking lot on the corner of Ninth Street and Indiana Avenue. The parking lot also has spaces designated for Indiana University C and E permits. During the weekends free parking is available on the surrounding streets.
We respectfully request that participants do not leave anything liquid, perishable or illegal! Also, offerings cannot be retrieved, so items should not be of great sentimental or monetary value. Each year’s offerings will be used to create the foundation of the following year’s altar. This way, we will build a Community Altar that reflects years of sentiment and many contributors. The Mathers Museum assumes no responsibility for anything left upon the altar and reserves the right to remove any items deemed inappropriate.