Seattle based artist Fulgencio Lazo usually paints on canvas and wood, but when October comes around he and his team bring a playful sense of color to sand. 

Lazo was studying at the Fine Arts School at the University of Benito Juarez of Oaxaca in the mid 1980's when the city brought in truckloads of sand for a Day of the Dead celebration. That's when he first tried to make a tapete, a sand painting.

Treading carefully, Lazo and his crew spent much of October 22 at the Tacoma Art Museum, carefully sprinkling colorful sand, creating an image that remembers those who lost their lives on the U.S.-Mexico border.

There are also more than two dozen colorful and touching altars at the museum. 

Day of the Dead is a multi-day holiday in which family and friends gather to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died, and help support their spiritual journey.

The finished tapete on view at the Tacoma Art Museum from now until November 5

The 15th Annual Dia de los Muertos Festival happens at the museum Sunday November 3. It is free and will include performances, food and face painting. 

Tacoma Art Museum | 1701 Pacific Ave, Tacoma, WA 98402

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