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RETABLO TINS ARE IN! - Lawndale Art Center's 26th Annual Día de los Muertos
Lawndale Art Center Houston

September, 2013


4912 Main Street, Houston, TX 77002 | 713.528.5858

Lawndale Art Center's 26th Annual Día de los Muertos 
October 21 - November 9, 2013 
In This Issue
Retablo Tins Are In!!!
Schedule of Events
Volunteer Opportunities
Educator Opportunities
Visit our Flickr page for images of past Día de los Muertos events at Lawndale!
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Sponsor this year's Día de los Muertos events!
 Funds raised in support of Lawndale's 26th Annual Día de los Muertos help underwrite the cost of presenting programs that celebrate cultural traditions of Mexico. These events foster pride and appreciation in one's own heritage and encourage tolerance and understanding. Contributions also fund Lawndale's free programs throughout the year and allow us to continue serving as one of Houston's leading contemporary arts spaces. 

To find out more about making a donation to this year's Día de los Muertos, please download our Donor Packet, contact us at 713.528.5858 or by email at


Donate now via PayPal!  

Become a Member! 

Lawndale members receive a $15 discount on admission to the Día de los Muertos Gala & Silent Auction! Membership levels start as low as $25 per year.
Houston Museum District 

Lawndale Art Center will celebrate Día de los Muertos/Day of the Dead with our annual series of programs including a Retablo Silent Auction/Gala on Friday, October 25, 2013.

Lawndale invites artists to create a retablo or ex-voto inspired work forthe auction using a small sheet of metal or "tin", that is provided by and can be picked up at Lawndale Art Center. Tins are limited to one sheet per artist and are issued on a first come, first served basis.






Please pick up your tin during normal business hours 
(while supplies last):
Monday - Friday, 10 AM - 5 PM
Saturday, 12 PM - 5 PM




Completed retablos must be delivered by 5PM on Thursday, October 10, 2013. Please deliver your retablos to Lawndale October 8 - 10, 2012, 10AM - 5PM. 


There is no entry fee. Entry rules and forms are available at Lawndale or click here to download the entry form.


Everyone starts with the same material and observes the following restrictions:

  • Each work must incorporate the metal issued by Lawndale (other materials may be added).
  • Maximum finished size: 12" x 14" x 6" deep.
  • Work must hang from the wall and must include any hardware (other than nails) needed to install.
  • Frames are not required.
  • All work must be for sale. 

Lawndale will not display work which does not meet all stated conditions or lacks sufficient structural integrity for exhibition and sale.


Schedule of Events 

October 21 - November 9, 2013  

Retablo & Student Exhibitions

October 21 - November 9, 2013

In 1988, Lawndale Art Center presented its first annual Día de los Muertos exhibition of retablos: small art works inspired by the traditional Latin American devotional art form of the same name. It is now one of Lawndale's most popular programs that reaches out to communities across the region. Lawndale invites artists and the public to create contemporary interpretations of retablos on 8" x 10" pieces of sheet metal. These retablos are then sold at the gala to benefit both Lawndale and the artists. Many well-known Houston and nationally known artists participate; the exhibition attracts a large audience and the gala is one of the most fun parties in Houston! 

Día de los Muertos is Lawndale's only open-call, non-juried exhibition. The retablo silent auction is our single largest fundraising event of the year.


Lawndale encourages teachers to educate their students about important aspects of Mexican culture and their related art practices and offers schools the opportunity to display their work in our Cavnar and Horton galleries. In past years, students have submitted projects such as sugar skulls, papel picado, papier mache skeletons, retablos, altars and other large-scale installations. 

Community Ofrenda

October 21 - November 9, 2013


Starting October 21, guests are encouraged to bring a personal item of remembrance to add to our community altar honoring departed loved ones.



Gala and Retablo Silent Auction
Friday, October 25, 2013
Artist, Member and Sponsor preview 6 - 7PM 
Gala and Silent Auction 7 - 9PM

Silent Auction closes at 8:45PM

Event Chairs: Denise Furlough, John Andell and David Thomas

Admission: $50 per person/ $35 for Lawndale Members


Tickets available at the door or in advance via PayPal or by calling 713-528-5858. Please call for Lawndale Member rate.

The festivities begin with a silent auction Friday, October 25. The auction of retablos, created and donated by nearly 250 Texas artists, feature contemporary interpretations of this traditional, devotional art. Guests will also enjoy Día de los Muertos exhibitions in the Cavnar and Horton galleries which feature the works of Houston school children. Complimentary refreshments provided by local restaurants.
Preview the exhibition Monday, October 21 - Thursday, October 24 during normal gallery hours.

Musical & Literary Ofrenda

Tuesday, October 29, 2013
performances begin at 6:15PM


Join us for an evening of celebration and remembrance. During Día de los Muertos, families create ofrendas to remember and honor the memory of their ancestors. A ROCO chamber group and Musiqa composers will present short original contemporary, classic compositions as musical ofrendas. Inprint will also present original readings written in the tradition of making an offering during the Día de los Muertos celebrations. This event is a partnership between ROCO,  Inprint,  Musiqa and Lawndale Art Center.


Sugar Skull Workshop

Wednesday, October 30, 2013
Demonstrations at 6 and 6:30PM
Registration required as space is limited.


In conjunction with our 26th Annual Día de los Muertos celebration, Lawndale Art Center is offering a sugar skull making workshop. The workshop is free and open to the public. Registration is requested as space is limited. Bring a bag of sugar and add it to the mix or just drop in for a quick demonstration. All participants may take home one sugar skull and a printed recipe.

To register, please email

Click here if you'd like to download the recipe and try making a sugar skull on your own. Molds are available for purchase at Casa Ramirez on 19th St. in the Heights. Join us for the Family Day Fiesta on November 2 to decorate one of the skulls made at the workshop.

Family Day Fiesta

Saturday, November 2, 2013
12 - 4PM

Admission: Free

Lawndale's 26th annual Día de los Muertoscelebration continues with a Saturday fiesta for families and children honoring participating teachers and students whose works of art can be viewed in the Cavnar and Horton galleries. Enjoy refreshments and children's activities such as cutting papel picado and decorating sugar skulls, along with performances by Mixteco Ballet Folklorico


Papel Picado Workshop

Thursday, November 7, 2013


Houston art educator and Lawndale supporter, Jean King, will lead a papel picado workshop as part of this year's Día de los Muertoscelebration. The workshop is free and open to the public. Visitors will not only learn about the traditional art of Mexican paper cutting from one of the best, but will also get to create and take home their own unique perforated paper creation.  


Volunteer Opportunities 


Come volunteer with us during our many Day of the Dead events! There is something for everyone, from assisting with craft activities to monitoring the auction of retablo tins, and we hope to have your support. Volunteers during Day of the Dead must be at least 16 years of age or older (see exceptions for Gala and Retablo Silent Auction). Volunteers under 18 must have their Parent/Guardian complete a Waiver. Questions? Contact Community Relations Coordinator, Emily Link,

For Educators  


There are a variety of ways teachers and students can participate in our events:

  • Your school group's artwork can be featured in Lawndale's Horton and Cavnar galleries during the months of October and November. Please contact Emily Link for more details at 713.528.5858 or You can also download this year's  Education Packet and Project Planning Worksheet for more information. Teachers interested in participating must submit a Project Planning Worksheet by September 9, 2013.
  • Introduce your students to the Día de los Muertos tradition by scheduling a tour with the Lawndale staff.
  • Visit our Day of the Dead Teacher's Resource Page, originally assembled by Carrie Green Markello and updated by Christopher Hyunh. This page serves as an excellent resource for students and teachers interested in learning about the history and traditions of this unique holiday.
  • Bring personal items for Lawndale's community ofrenda.
Programs at Lawndale are supported in part by The National Endowment for the Arts, Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, The City of Houston through the Houston Museum District Association, The Texas Commission on the Arts, Houston Endowment, The Brown Foundation, Inc., The John R. Eckel, Jr. Foundation, The John P. McGovern Foundation, Art Colony Association, John M. O'Quinn, Cecily E. Horton, Ann W. Harithas, Diana M. Hudson and Lee Kaplan, Chinhui Juhn and Edward R Allen III, Bevin and Dan Dubrowksi, Bruce Eames, Anita and David Garten, Felvis Foundation/David R. Graham, Jenny and Mark Johnson, Jeryn and Walter Mayer, Paula Murphy, Andrew C. Schirrmeister III, Scott Sparvero, TeleFlex, United Airlines, Kinzelman Art C


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