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CALL FOR PROPOSALS: Ofrenda artists demos for Dia de Los Muertos @ DIA

Submission deadlines for all proposals are by end of day Friday, October 4

The Detroit Institute of Arts extends an open call for proposals that celebrate the Mexican tradition of Ofrenda altars. This Artist Demonstration will commence with the installation of selected Ofrendas from October 22-24, 2013, which will then be on display for the public from October 25-November 3. While on view the installation will be accompanied by a participatory element encouraging museum guests to write a personal note of remembrance honoring figures in their community or personal history as a way of adding to a community altar.

On Sunday, November 3 from 2-3pm, all Ofrenda artists will participate in an artist talk in order to provide insight into the inspiration behind the display.

Ofrenda altars were originally developed as part of the traditions surrounding the Day of the Dead, an annual celebration where family and friends gather to honor those who have passed. Ofrenda altars were created as part of the celebration as a way for people to pay respects to and remember deceased ancestors and typically included favorite foods, mementos, pictures, sugar skulls and flowers among the altar’s decorative elements – however, in contemporary iterations, Ofrendas have also been created as a way to pay homage to not only people but places, moments in time, ideas and events that people feel are worth commemorating. What are the people, places and things that you want remembered? If you were to design an Ofrenda altar, what would it include?

The DIA invites proposals to create contemporary Ofrenda altars in the museum’s Rivera Galleries. Please include the following information in your proposal:

-Name & Contact Information

-Dimensions of the work (height, width, depth)

-Materials which will be included in the work (paper, plastic, etc.)*

(*Please be advised that due to the sensitive nature of the nearby Rivera murals, artists are requested to only include sealed containers of any food/drink, flowers, or organic materials in their works.)

-Technical needs (extension cords, electrical plugs, etc. Please make sure any electrical devices are UL rated.)

-Short Description of the piece with estimated budget (1-3 sentences.)

-A visual image (sketch of the proposed piece or visual inspiration for your proposal.)

Submission deadlines for all proposals are by end of day Friday, October 4. Proposals will be reviewed and artists will be contacted by Wednesday, October 9. All participating artists will receive a small stipend as well as a budget for materials.

Please email all proposals and any questions to Carrie Morris, Program Coordinator, at

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