The origin of Catrina was an etching created by illustrator Jose Guadalupe Posada sometime between 1910 -1913. The image is of a female skeleton wearing a glamourous hat that depicts the upper class. 'she is offered as a satirical portrait of those Mexican natives who, Posada felt, were aspiring to adopt European aristocratric traditions in the pre-revolutionary era'.
The skeleton symbolises that death eventually happens to all of us, no matter your status and wealth. Since Jose's etching, she has become an icon of the day of the dead. Please click on the links to read all about the history.
Painting by Sylvia Ji of Catrina Calavera. Oddly, I find these quite beautiful.
It is common to see her embodied as part of the celebrations throughout the country with handicrafts made of clay and other materials: For sale and as displays in windows.
Artistic face paintings of skeletons seen throughout the streets.
Many people dress in incredible costumes and wander through the streets. Parades and parties are organised.
|Over the three days Mexicans visit the graves of their loved ones.|
"On October 31, All Hallows Eve, the children make a children's altar to invite the angelitos (spirits of dead children) to come back for a visit. November 1 is All Saints Day, and the adult spirits will come to visit. November 2 is All Souls Day, when families go to the cemetery to decorate the graves and tombs of their relatives. The three-day fiesta filled with marigolds, the flowers of the dead; muertos (the bread of the dead); sugar skulls; cardboard skeletons; tissue paper decorations; fruit and nuts; incense, and other traditional foods and decorations."
—Frances Ann Day, Latina and Latino Voices in Literature[
This religious event seems to have become very popular the last few years with many tourists flocking there eager to experience Mexico's Dia de Muertos.
Hope you enjoyed this post. Ciao for now.