by: Marcela Torres


Xochiotia, nahuatl (Uto-Aztec language): to tinge something with the smell or color of roses, or to decorate something with flowers; to flower.

Xochiotia; at El Paseo is an outdoor sculpture project hosted by the El Paseo Community Garden in the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago. Throughout the summer of 2021, the public will be invited to envision Flower Mountain, a pre-conquest Meso-American afterworld within the community garden. Through creating a large adobe brick monument and a series of programs with local partners, we will collectively engage in sensorial ritual acts that allow us to enter the flower paradise. Xochiotia will establish a space outside an art gallery for the community to be the central focus.  In this year of so much tragedy, we can turn to Indigenous rituals to understand how death is also part of the natural world’s cycles and find a space to celebrate the lives we lost by remembering their intimate fragrance or texture much like flowers themselves. I have turned to using Indigenous cosmologies and botany to decolonize my approach to living, and, in turn, how we view death. Xochiotia is a project that brings all of those aspects together for the benefit of a community. 


Community Brick Making

Every Saturday
May 29th to July 3rd
10 am to 1 pm
Walk-in workshops

If you have questions or concerns, contact Marcela Torres.

Ritual, Ground to Sky Workshop

Tuesdays (June 1 to July 6)
6 pm to 8 pm
Registration Required. Limited to Pilsen and Little Village Residents.
Bilingual: English & Spanish
Co-Led: Marcela Torres, Gnarware, Cristina Puzio, and D. Rosen

Ritual: Scent, Earth and Plant is a 6 week course devoted to learning and developing ritual practices through scented smoke, ceramics and plant care. These elements are central to the community indigenous health practices. The “Ritual” describes the shape of scent and the earth work helped to bond one with ancestors and the natural earth, keeping negative spirits at bay. The Ritual, fortifies, clarifies a mental health in times of turmoil. Participants will engage with a collection of artists, ceramicists and herbalists to learn new skills and forge their individual ritual practice with the community. Practice includes meditation, incense making, ceramics and botany.

Schedule :

June 1 – Meditation (Cristina Puzio) & Incense making (D.Rosen and Marcela Torres)
June 8 – Pottery making (GnarWare and Marcela Torres)
June 15 – Pottery finishing and herbalism demo (GnarWare and Marcela Torres)
June 22 – Pottery glazing(GnarWare and Marcela Torres)
June 29 – Pottery firing (GnarWare and Marcela Torres)
July 6 – Flower essence (Cristina Puzio) Planting (D.Rosen and Marcela Torres)

Register Here

If you have questions or concerns, contact Marcela Torres.

Incense Making Workshop

June 26th
12:00 pm
Registration Required. Limited to Pilsen and Little Village Residents.

If you have questions or concerns, contact Marcela Torres.

COVID Notes & Guidelines

While the CDC has recommended relaxed guidelines as more people are getting vaccinated, the garden encourages you to continue wearing your mask and practice social distancing while participating in garden events.

**If you or someone in your household is sick, please stay home**

Please Support this Project.

This project will only be funded if $5,000 is contributed to 3Arts by June 07, 2021, 11:59PM

Click here to Donate