Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia
Scottsdale, Arizona 85253

Dia De Los Muertos

Omni Scottsdale Dia De Los Muertos

Artisan Display - November 6-20, 2017 

Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia is now featuring a grand skull art installation from the Scottsdale Dia de Los Muertos event. The most familiar symbol of Dia de Los Muertos are calacas and calaveras (skeletons and skulls), which appear everywhere during the holiday in candied sweets, as parade masks and as sculpture art. Be sure to visit the resort to view this colorful, 3D work of art sculpted by Marcos Pollitz. 

An "Ofrenda" (altar) is also featured as a tribute to those whom have passed. Guests are invited to bring photos or write a message on a card in memory of their loved ones.

Each Grand Skull is curated by Lore Productions & Heriberto Luna and sculpted by Marcos Pollitz. Contributing artists include Alfonso Aceves, Chavez Art, Cola Smith, Noni Olabisi and Rachel Hoye

History of Dia de Los Muertos


Dia de Los Muertos, which coincides with All Saints and All Souls Day is a Mexican holiday observed throughout Mexico and around the world. The celebration centers around remembering friends and family members who have passed away. The dead come to life through the memories of the living. On Dia de los Muertos, the dead are part of the community, awakened from their eternal sleep to share remembrance with their loved ones. Events typically take place from October 31st through November 2nd. Most believe that the gates of heaven are opened at midnight on October 31st, and the spirits of all deceased children (angelitos) are allowed to reunite with their families for 24 hours. On November 2nd, the spirits of adults come down to enjoy the festivities that are prepared for them. Homes, cemeteries and public spaces await the annual visit of the dearly departed. Traditions connected with the holiday include visiting graves with gifts and possessions, building private and public altars honoring the deceased with items such as marigolds, sugar skulls, and the favorite foods of the departed.


The origins of Dia de Los Muertos can be traced back to 2500-3000 years to the Aztec Festival dedicated to the goddess known as Mictecacihuatl "The Lady of the Dead," which fell on the 9th month of the Aztec calendar during the corn harvest. Mesoamerican civilizations viewed death as the continuation of life. Instead of fearing death, they embraced it. To them, life was a dream and only in death did they become truly awake.

There were two ceremonies valued over and above all rituals of death throughout the 18 months of the Aztec calendar year. The first fell in the ninth month of Miccailhuitontli that meant, "small feast of the dead," the second took place during the following month, Hueymiccaihuitl, meaning the "great feast of the dead." 

Altars y Ofrendas

Dia de Los Muertos revolves around ofrendas or offerings, which are created through a visual display of altar-making and grave decorating. Offerings are a main focal point of the celebration and echo the dedication and distinct love that is presented toward the dearly departed. An altar includes the four main elements of nature: earth, wind, water and fire.

  • Earth is represented by the crop: The soul is fed by the various earthly aromas. Placing fruit or favorite family dishes on the altar provides nourishment for the beloved souls.
  • Wind is represented by a moving object: Paper-mache is commonly utilized to represent the echoes of the wind.
  • Water is placed in a container: This is done so that the soul may quench its thirst, after the long-awaited journey to the altar. Water is also used as a means of purification.
  • Fire is represented by a wax candle: Each lit candle represents a loving soul, and an extra one is placed for the forgotten soul.
  • The Cempasuchitl (Marigold) is known as the "The flower of the dead:" It blossoms in the valleys of Mexico, during the months of October and November, with a bright yellow color. It is central to altar decorating. This flower aids the spirits to wander back.
  • Photos are widely used in honor of the individual that they are paying homage to.

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