In connection with the multicultural elements of the area, the Jasper Community Arts is hosting a Diá de Muertos altar at the Thyen-Clark Cultural Center.
The large display located in the lounge area between the two galleries was built with the assistance of volunteers from Jasper Community Arts, Asociación Latinoamericana del Sur de Indiana (ALASI), student members of the Jasper High School Latinos Unidos and the Southridge High School Los Raiders and the VUJ Jasper Latino Institute, as well as community members.
The altar hosts images and mementos from loved ones who have passed away in an effort to attract them for a special reunion believed to occur during the November holiday. The altar also holds many significant elements representing the passage of life to death and connections between the living and spiritual worlds.
Largely practiced in Mexico and Latin American countries, altars are usually handmade in preparation for the celebration of the Diá de Muertos (Day of the Dead) on November 1st and 2nd. Some families maintain an altar honoring the deceased in their homes year-round.
During the annual November celebration, the barrier between the living and dead is said to be at its thinnest, and the altars act as guides, enticements and remembrances of those loved ones who have passed away.
The public is invited to add their own mementos or framed images to the public altar on display at the Thyen-Clark Cultural Center, as well as visit the layered and symbolic altar.