Help Figge celebrate lost loved ones during Día de los Muertos

Figge Art Museum
This is no April Fool’s – the Figge Art Museum will be offering free admission while hosting a major exhibition this month.  CREDIT John Schultz

As the Figge Art Museum launches its 2023 Día de los Muertos celebration Saturday, Sept. 16, curators are inviting Quad Citians to share memories and photos of late loved ones to incorporate into its exhibit at the downtown Davenport museum. 

Those pictures and cherished memories, which should be sent to, will help add a personal and touching dimension to its celebration, the museum said in a news release about its Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, celebration. 

Day of the Dead Figge Art Museum

Beginning Saturday, the riverfront museum will invite art enthusiasts and cultural explorers to immerse themselves in the vibrant Día de los Muertos holiday through the Figge’s 2023 exhibition: Day of the Dead: Remember, Honor, Celebrate. 

The event is sponsored by MidAmerican Energy Co. and runs through Dec. 3. It also includes such highlights as the museum’s free Sunday, Oct. 15, Family Fiesta (noon-3 p.m.). The party will include art activities, music, dance, food and community. A full schedule of events for the fiesta can be found at

Attendance at the art museum will be free on Oct. 15, the day of the Figge’s Remember, Honor, Celebrate fiesta. And it is made possible through the museum’s partnership with LULAC Council 10, Ascentra Credit Union and Hola America.

For thousands of years, the Figge said, the traditional Mexican holiday of Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) has captivated hearts and minds with its rich cultural significance.

It is often celebrated with parades like Mercado on Fifth’s 2023 Día de los Muertos Parade which this year is planned for Saturday, Oct. 28. The downtown Moline outdoor marketplace’s 2023 effort is hoping to repeat its wildly popular parade and celebration in 2022

The Figge’s 2023 Day of the Dead exhibition delves into what makes Día de los Muertos so special and how the holiday has taken on more meaning and proportions in the United States and beyond.

“This exhibition is a powerful testament to the enduring spirit of this ancient Mexican tradition,” Heather Aaronson, Figge Gallery interpretation and engagement coordinator, said in a news release. “Through art and storytelling, we aim to bridge cultures, celebrate memories, and remind everyone of the universal value of honoring our loved ones.” 

The museum says visitors will learn about how humans celebrate and remember the lives of lost loved ones through the collective traditions, artmaking and story-telling that are integral parts of Día de los Muertos.

The holiday also not only holds strong ties with the Hispanic community but it has gone global.

For example the Day of the Day was declared a World Heritage Day by UNESCO in 2003. UNESCO’s recognition highlights the importance and resilience of living heritage passed down through generations within communities, the Figge said.  

Museum visitors to “Remember, Honor, Celebrate” can expect a diverse experience that includes a mobile audio tour, in-gallery activities, a traditional altar and captivating Catrinas. Bilingual didactics in English and Spanish makes the exhibition more educational and engaging for visitors.  

It will also feature several handmade works by Victor Granados, Martha Yesenia Granados,  and their family members, including a newly crafted altar-piece. Also new to the exhibition this year is a series of Nicho boxes created by Rock Island High School students enrolled in the Figge’s Big Picture Immersive Outreach Program. 

The Figge Art Museum is located on the Mississippi River  in downtown Davenport at 225 West Second St. It is the premier art exhibition and education facility between Chicago and Des Moines. Its landmark glass building, designed by British architect David  Chipperfield, is home to one of the Midwest’s finest art collections and presents world-class exhibitions,  art classes, lectures, and special events that attract visitors of all ages. 

Museum hours are: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday; 10 a.m.-8 p.m. on Thursdays; and 12-5 p.m. on Sundays. Reservations are not required, but can be made at or by calling 563-345-6632.

Admission to the museum is $10 for adults, $6 for seniors and students with ID and $4 children ages 4-12. Admission is free to Figge members, institutional members and to all on Thursday evenings.

You can become a member for as little as $50 by visiting the Figge website. Contact the museum at 563-326-7804, or visit  

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