SUNDAY, MAY 9 / 10 AM – 4 PM

Des Moines Art Center hosts 16th annual Day of the Dead

Posted on Monday, October 17, 2016

For Immediate Release
Contact: Barbara Briggie-Smith
Tel: 515.271.0343

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Des Moines Art Center hosts 16th annual Day of the Dead

DES MOINES, IOWA (October 2016) – On Sunday, October 30, noon – 4 pm, the Des Moines Art Center will host the 16th annual Day of the Dead / Día de los Muertos celebration. The event will take place at 4700 Grand Avenue and is FREE and open to the public. A free shuttle will be available at Merrill Middle School, 5301 Grand Avenue, Des Moines.

Day of the Dead is a traditional Latino celebration that honors the lives of members of the community who have recently passed away, as well as a festive day of music, dancing, food and drink, art activities, and remembrances for the entire family.

This year’s celebration will honor the lives of Mario (1927-2015) and Simone Soria (1930-2001), whose paths crossed in America after living rich lives on two different continents. Mario Soria, born in La Paz, Bolivia, came to the United States to study, and later became the chairperson of the Foreign Language Department at Drake University where he also taught Hispanic literature, theatre, and civilization. He retired as Professor Emeritus of Spanish. Simone Soria was born in Czechoslovakia and eventually moved to Belgium as a child. She was one of approximately 7,000 Jewish children in Belgium who were saved from deportation during the Holocaust in World War II due to the courageous efforts of various groups and individuals. She was a dedicated woman of many talents and accomplishments. She taught English as a Second Language at Hoover High School and was active in local Jewish community youth programs. A film will be shown detailing their life together.

About the Des Moines Art Center

Recognized by international art critics as a world-class museum in the heart of the Midwest, the Des Moines Art Center has amassed an important collection with a major emphasis on contemporary art. The collection’s overriding principle is a representation of artists from the 19th century to the present, each through a seminal work. This accounts for an impressive collection that ranges from Edward Hopper’s Automat to Jasper Johns’ Tennyson, Henri Matisse’s Woman in White, Georgia O’Keeffe’s From the Lake No. 1, Francis Bacon’s Study after Velásquez’s Portrait of Pope Innocent X, Bill Viola’s Ascension, and Cecily Brown’s Half-Bind.

The Art Center’s physical complex marries with the collection for a totally integrated experience. The collection is housed in three major buildings, each designed by a world-renowned architect – Eliel Saarinen, I. M. Pei, and Richard Meier. With the exception of special events, admission to the museum is free.

In September 2009, the John and Mary Pappajohn Sculpture Park opened in Des Moines’ Western Gateway Park. Philanthropists John and Mary Pappajohn have provided funding for and donated 28 sculptures by internationally acclaimed contemporary artists to the Des Moines Art Center. The collection of sculptures by such artists as Louise Bourgeois, Deborah Butterfield, Willem de Kooning, Olafur Eliasson, Keith Haring, Ellsworth Kelly, Jaume Plensa, Richard Serra, Joel Shapiro, and Mark di Suvero, is the most significant donation of artwork to the Art Center in a single gift in the museum’s history. The Pappajohn Sculpture Park was created in collaboration with the Pappajohns, the City of Des Moines, the Des Moines Art Center, and numerous corporate and private donors.

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