Art of Dying Volume II | Page 4

EDITOR’S NOTE Shadows Last November I witnessed Tucson’s All Souls Procession, America’s festal cousin to Mexico’s Dia de los Muertos celebration. Through costumes JOHN WADSWORTH pretend to ignore, vainly challenge, hopelessly fear, but finally cross. Everyone in Art of Dying shares their and makeup, the majority of the over 100,000 relationship with their perceived boundary of the living to that of the dead. The Procession of relating to death while living, the many facets of participants change their appearance from that ends at a site where musicians, dancers, and aerialists perform on an outdoor stage with a giant screen backdrop. Projected on the screen are photographs of departed loved ones, scanned from aged paper or sourced from digital files. Prior to the performances, participants take their last steps of pilgrimage across the stage. Each of the thousands of pilgrims casts a unique shadow against the radiant faces of the dead, blurring the ephemeral boundary we, the living, between life and death. They share the importance preparation, the many paths to acceptance. They share the beauty of having crossed the boundary while still alive, of knowing heaven on earth. Jon Underwood devoted his life to expanding society’s dialogue about death and dying. This year, at 44, Jon Underwood died. At 96, Iris Apfel does not talk about death. We are all on a pilgrimage toward death’s radiance. We each cast a unique shadow. JOHN WADSWORTH, FOUNDING EDITOR AND CREATIVE DIRECTOR [email protected] 4 | ART OF DYING @ARTOFDYINGMAGAZINE @ARTOFDYINGMAG