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  • Writer's pictureJennifer Oladipo

Exploring Day of the the Dead

by Anna Fonner

🖤Ofrenda🖤 In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15-October 15), I decided to learn about the Ofrenda. I built an altar for my grandmother while listening to “Blue Skies” by Ella Fitzgerald, a song she would sing to me before bed.

Building the altar brought back so many memories of her, it was really wonderful to spend that time reminiscing. She spent many years of her life working at Abbott’s Market in Center Wheeling, West Virginia, selling fruit and vegetables. I cut up the most beautiful orange for her with plump blueberries.

The painting in the background is one of hers that she never finished and the rooster represents our Ukrainian last name in English.

Golden petals from a sunflower scattered across the Ofrenda represent remembrance while guiding the spirits to their respective altars.

I can understand why building an Ofrenda during Dia de los Muertos has become such a strong tradition. This is something I plan to continue doing with my son as he grows older.

Want to learn more? Explore a traditional ofrenda from through this mini-exhibit from the Museo de Arte Popular in Mexico City.

Anna Fonner is The Chord photographer in residence and owner of Ark Photography.

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