31 October – 2 November 2018
At the beginning of every November in the city of Oaxaca (approximately 280 miles southeast of Mexico City), 3,000-year old Día de los Muertos which can be traced back to pre-Colombian times, is celebrated for three days. During these 72-hours, the dead are honoured and their souls welcomed home as a blessing. Throughout this annual festival, images abound of the iconic, animated skeletons called calaveras, which was invented by 19th century printmaker Jose Guadalupe Posada and popularised by artist Diego Rivera. October 31st is preparation day, when the women clean the house and get food ready while the guys build clay altars. November 1st is dedicated to children and infants – Día de los Angelitios (Day of the Little Angels). The main event on 2nd November – Día de los Muertos – is usually an adult affair, with bigger and more elaborate costumes, more complex rituals, spicier foods and plenty of tequila.