Young People’s Ofrenda: Expressions of Life and Remembrance

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Young People’s Ofrenda: Expressions of Life and Remembrance

Students from four Minnesota schools draw inspiration from Day of the Dead traditions in Mexico for this personal and moving exhibition.

November 1—December 4, 2011, in the Katherine Kierland Herberger Gallery (110)

Minneapolis, MN, October 6—Now in its fourth year, the Minneapolis Institute of Art’ “Young People’s Ofrenda” exhibition expands on the museum’s original partnership with El Colegio Charter School in Minneapolis to include three additional schools: Austin High School (greater Minnesota), Thomas Edison High School (Minneapolis), and Humboldt Secondary School (St. Paul). Together with the MIA, these schools present a special exhibition at the museum celebrating el Día de los Muertos (The Day of the Dead). This holiday, celebrated each year on November 1 and 2, is a Mexican tradition in which family and friends gather to honor those who have died. On this occasion, the departed souls are believed to return to visit their living relatives.
Students from each school explore world cultures’ reverence for ancestors, creating personal ofrendas (offerings) to honor them. Made with wooden fruit crates, symbolic of the agricultural work performed by many of Minnesota’s migrant populations, these ofrendas reflect students’ own experiences. They include traditional elements, such as flowers, skeletons, foods, candles, and personal mementos to honor their loved ones.

Sixty selected ofrendas—15 from each school—are on display November 1 through December 4 in the museum’s Katherine Kierland Herberger Gallery (110). A related Web site ( follows the students’ progress through videos and blogs as they create their art works.

Free docent-led or self-guided tours of the exhibition are available for groups of 10 or more by registering at Public tours (in English and Spanish) are also available Sundays at 1 p.m., November 6 through December 4. Public tours free and require no reservation.

Generous support is provided by Best Buy Co., and Cargill.

About the Minneapolis Institute of Art
The Minneapolis Institute of Art (MIA), home to one of the finest encyclopedic art collections in the country, houses more than 80,000 works of art representing 5,000 years of world history. Highlights of the permanent collection include European masterworks by Rembrandt, Poussin, and van Gogh; modern and contemporary painting and sculpture by Picasso, Matisse, Mondrian, Stella, and Close; as well as internationally significant collections of prints and drawings, decorative arts, Modernist design, photographs, textiles, and Asian, African, and Native American art. General admission is always free. Some special exhibitions have a nominal admission fee. Museum hours: Sunday, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.; Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.; Thursday, 10 a.m.–9 p.m.; closed Monday. For more information, call (612) 870-3131 or visit