Call for Art and Submission GuidelinesThe Second Annual El Monte Dia De Los Muertos: Saturday, October 29, 2011
Location: 10933 Valley Mall El Monte, CA 91731 (Outdoor Event)

Artwork must be picked up from Nuvein Advisory Board Member, Grasiela Rodriguez the first week of November 2011 (unless other arrangement has been made)
3400 Aerojet Ave, Suite 177
El Monte, CA 91731

This exhibit will explore the rituals of the Day of the Dead that venerate and celebrate the dearly departed. Death was considered a passage to a new life to the indigenous people of Mexico. It is believed that the spirits of the dead return to earth for one day of the year to be with their loved ones. The Day of the Dead is a way in which the living remembers and honors their departed relatives. To those unaware of the customs of the holiday it may sound morbid but it is anything but that. It is a festive and colorful holiday.

Artists are asked to research the Day of the Dead/Día De Los Muertos and include references to the traditional and cultural aspects that go along with the holiday. It is encouraged that the artwork submitted serves as a way to educate the viewer. Only two-dimensional work will be accepted. Artwork that examines rituals honoring the deceased and/or pays tribute to departed ancestors is encouraged.

All accepted artwork will be on view at the exhibit held at El Monte’s Second Annual Dia De Los Muertos Festival. This is an outdoor show.

Submissions must include:
– Artist’s first and last name, telephone number and email address
– Title of work, dimensions, price of each piece unless indicated NFS (not for sale)
– Low res jpeg of the work

All accepted work must be received by October 27, 2011. Nuvein Advisory Board will coordinate the delivery and pick-up of original artwork with the artist.

Digital Format: Digital images can be submitted by e-mail (send to:

To send via email: The email should include the artist’s full name as subject along with ‘DIA DE LOS MUERTOS SUBMISSION.’ (Send to:

The images must meet the following specifications:

File names = artist’s last name (underscore) first name, followed by the entry number.
(i.e. Jones_Mike_1.jpg).

The image files should be in low resolution (for viewing purpose only) JPEG format, images should be approximately 5” x 7” and 72 dpi. (does not have to be exact, just don’t send high resolution images). The images must be oriented properly (i.e. top of image is top of artwork) and should not include text info or borders that are not part of the actual work.

Sale of Work: All work, unless indicated as not for sale (NFS), will be available for sale during exhibit. Nuvein Foundation for Literature and the Arts will retain a commission of 10% on all artwork sold during the exhibition. Artists will be required to sign an entry form upon delivery of the artwork.
Questions? Contact Grasiela Rodriguez at or contact Nuvein Foundation at
(626) 600-2780 to leave a message.

Mt. SAC Professor and Mentor Dies at Age 53, Leaves Legacy of Creativity and Ambition

Picture: Enrique Diaz with DBD student, Erica Garces

Enrique Diaz, professor at Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, and founder of the Nuvein Foundation for Literature and the Arts, died on March 28. He was 53.

Diaz also founded Digital Business and Design College in El Monte, a private college providing technical degrees in multimedia and computer design. DBD served students and business professionals from Greater Los Angeles, but especially provided the technical education for careers in web design, information technology and networking, and graphic design.

He is survived by: Jeffrey Bickel, husband; Aurora Diaz, mother; Nicolas Herman, Maribel, Judith, and Arlene, siblings.

Diaz was involved in many community organizations, serving as Webmaster for various Chambers of Commerce in the San Gabriel Valley.

Born in Tecomatlan, Jalisco, Mexico, Diaz immigrated here as a child with his parents. They lived in various parts of eastern Los Angeles, including City Terrace.

A graduate of Roosevelt High School, Class of 1977, Diaz spearheaded a folklorico ballet dance troupe at El Sereno Junior High, performing in and choreographing routines for junior high and high school students.

Diaz then enlisted in the United States Navy in 1979, proudly serving on the USS New Jersey (BB-62), where he collaborated with like-minded servicemen to share written stories and essays. This group was the beginning of Nuvein Foundation for Literature and the Arts.

After honorable discharge, he returned home to enroll at Cal Poly Pomona, earning his degree in 1992 in English Literature.

He and Jeff Bickel met in 1986 at KPFK radio in Los Angeles. Bickel was a staff member at KPFK, working on an initiative to enlist volunteers for the station. Since 1999, they were registered domestic partners, and were married in June 2008.

His extensive teaching experience includes a 23-year teaching position at Mt San Antonio College, UEI, Pasadena City College, El Dorado, Palladium Technical, and at his own school, Digital Business and Design College.

Forever remembered as “Our Storyteller”, Enrique will be sorely missed by the countless lives he enriched by means of mentoring, entrepreneurship, artist collectives, scholarships, fundraising, and leadership in community service.



Date: April 7, 2011

Time: 6PM – 9PM

Grace T Black Auditorium

3130 Tyler Avenue

El Monte, California 91731



Date: April 9, 2011

Time: 9AM

St. John Baptist Church

3843 Baldwin Park Boulevard

Baldwin Park, CA 91706


El Día de los Muertos—¡Un Día Feliz!

El Día de los Muertos, que se celebra el 2 de noviembre, es una de las fiestas más populares en México y en varias partes de los Estados Unidos. Data de la epoca pre-hispánica.   Para las culturas mexicanas (la olmeca, la maya, la azteca, etc.) “la muerte” era un concepto primordial, según el cual, los difuntos tenían que viajar a “Mictlán.” Su jornada era muy peligrosa. Tenían que pasar un río hondo, subir altísimas montañas y luchar contra animales salvajes.

No hubo ni premios ni castigos para la mayoría de los muertos, excepto que algunos difuntos dependiendo de su manera de morir, se convirtieron en dioses.  Los guerreros valientes resucitaron como aves con el deber de acompañar al sol en el alba o en el atardecer.

En el Día de los Muertos, muchas familias visitan los cementerios, adornan las tumbas, ponen flores (zempasuchil o maravillas) y enciendan velas.  Es una ocasión de gozo.   Se prenden velas, se preparan aguas de frutas y atole.  Se adornan “Panes de Muerto” con huesos de dulce arriba, y con azúcar roja para representar la sangre.  Hay una gran cantidad de galletas, dulces de calabaza, calacas endulzadas y conservas de fruta.

Se ven esqueletos y calaveras por todas partes.   Las celebraciones incluyen música, La Danza de los Viejitos y el Baile del Pescado Blanco.

¡El Día de los Muertos es una gran celebración de la vida en sí!

Profesora Esthela Torres de Siegrist, ABD, UNAM
David Siegrist, ABD, USC

Image Credit: Flickr – Glen’s Pics

Day of the Dead – A Happy Day

The Day of the Dead is celebrated on November 2, and is one of the most popular holidays in Mexico and in various parts of the United States.  It takes place on November 2, and dates from pre-Hispanic times.  For ancient Mexican cultures (the Olmecs, the Mayas, the Aztecs, etc.) “death” was a major concern, according to which, the dearly departed set out for “Mictlan.” Theirs was a dangerous journey. The deceased had to ford a deep river, climb the highest mountains, and fight savage beasts.

There was no reward or punishment for most of the dead, except that some departed souls, depending on how they died, were reincarted as gods.  Brave warriors were reincarnated as winged birds, whose duty was to accompany the sun at dawn or at dusk.

On the Day of the Dead, many families visit cemeteries, where they adorn grave sites, place flowers (the zempasuchil or maravillas) and light candles.   It is a joyous occasion.  Candles are lit.  Fruit drinks, and atole are prepared.  Traditional “Day of the Dead” breads with bones on top, are adorned with red sugar, to symbolize blood.  Cookies, pumpkin-based candy, skulls of sugar, and fruit preserves abound.  Skeletons and skulls are seen everywhere.   Celebrations include music, the Dance of the Old Men and the White Fish dance.

by Professor Esthela Torres de Siegrist, ABD, UNAM
David Siegrist, ABD, USC

Image Credit: Flickr – Señor Codo