Community Day: Día de Los Muertos

Person wearing skull makeup, a poncho, and a straw hat in front of an altar.

Photo by Frederick Liang.


Celebrate Día de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) with a full day of live entertainment, cultural demonstrations, and an eclectic mix of artmaking experiences. Gather your family and friends for this annual festive event that has been a highlight of SJMA family programming for over twenty years. Join us as we collaborate with local artists, partners, and organizations for this truly intracultural and multigenerational event! Museum admission is free all day.

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  • Calavera de Azúcar Decorating: Sugar skulls decorated with brightly colored frosting are often used to decorate ofrendas, or altars, celebrating those we have lost. Make your own with us. 

  • Mariposa Bookmarks: Every year millions of Monarch butterflies make their way to Mexico to overwinter, arriving during the celebration of Dia de Los Muertos. Celebrate their migration with these beautiful bookmarks. 

  • Handmade Flor de Muerto: Marigolds, also called cempasúchil, or flor de muerto, are a popular decoration during Día de Los Muertos, as their signature scent may attract the souls of the departed back to us. Make your own beautiful flowers to decorate your home.


  • Ofrenda by artist Lissa Jones, a lifelong resident of Northern California, was born in San Francisco and raised in San Jose in a multicultural family. Artistically influenced by creative opportunities, travel, and academic studies–her work is a fusion of everyday life with cultural ritual. 

Exhibitions On View


Man dressed as a skeleton playing a guitar in the galleries.