Navigation Menu+



Steven Hofmann
Carnival, 2013
Acrylic on Canvas
18 inches x 24 inches

Carnival celebrations, usually referred to as Mardi Gras, were first celebrated along the Gulf Coast. Customs originated in the onetime French colonial capitals of Mobile (now in Alabama), New Orleans (Louisiana) and Biloxi (Mississippi), all of which have been celebrated for many years with street parades and masked balls.

New Orleans Mardi Gras celebrations draw hundreds of thousands of tourists to the city to mingle with locals at the famed parties and parades. As many as a half-million spectators have been estimated  to line the route of major parades. The first Mardi Gras festivities in Louisiana were held on March 3, 1699. On that day, a group of French explorers set up camp on the west bank of the Mississippi River, 60 miles downriver from what is now New Orleans. The group’s leader, Pierre Baptiste Le Moyne, Sieur d’Iberville dubbed the spot La Pointe du Mardi Gras.

North Central Art Gallery, 8808 N Central Ave #100, Phoenix, AZ 85020