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In Mexico City, Face Paint and Fanfare Pave the Way for Day of the Dead

The city was awash with colorful festivities for the annual Grand Procession of the Catrinas, leading up to Day of the Dead, Nov. 1-2.

A woman dressed up as "Catrina," a Mexican character also known as "The Elegant Death," takes part in the annual Grand Procession of the Catrinas, part of upcoming Day of the Dead celebrations in Mexico City on Oct. 22, 2017.

The Calavera Catrina, or Dapper Skeleton, is the most representative image of the Day of the Dead, an indigenous festivity that honors ancestors and occurs from Nov. 1 to Nov. 2. The figure of a skeleton wearing an elegant broad-brimmed hat was first illustrated as a satirical engraving by artist Jose Guadalupe Posada sometime between 1910 and his death in 1913.

Carlos Jasso / Reuters
A young woman gets her face painted in the style of Mexico's iconic Catrina ahead of the start of the parade. Rebecca Blackwell / AP
Women march through colorful smoke along the parade route. Carlos Jasso / Reuters
Participants celebrate throughout Mexico City. Mario Guzman / EPA
Revelers dance along Reforma Avenue. Ronaldo Schemidt / AFP - Getty Images
A couple dances during the parade as other participants watch. Ronaldo Schemidt / AFP - Getty Images
People disguised as Catrina. Ronaldo Schemidt / AFP - Getty Images
A girl leans against stone benches as she awaits the start of the Grand Procession. Rebecca Blackwell / AP
The streets are covered with Catrinas for the Grand Procession. Rebecca Blackwell / AP
A woman wears traditional face paint representing death. Ronaldo Schemidt / AFP - Getty Images
A family poses in costume. Ronaldo Schemidt / AFP - Getty Images
People have their faces painted in preparation for the march. Rebecca Blackwell / AP
One parade participant hands a flower to another. Ronaldo Schemidt / AFP - Getty Images
People celebrate in preparation for the Day of the Dead. Ronaldo Schemidt / AFP - Getty Images
Participants pose on Reforma Avenue. Ronaldo Schemidt / AFP - Getty Images