I think we risk becoming the best informed society that has ever died of ignorance.
Credo che rischiamo di diventare la società più informata che mai sia morta di ignoranza.
– Ruben Blades
✓ My grandmother died last year.
✗ My grandmother *is dead* last year.
Mia nonna è morta l’anno scorso.
Quite simple, really: die is a regular verb (to die > died > died), while dead is an adjective. Some more examples:
✓ She’s sad because her pet rabbit has died.
✗ She’s sad because her pet rabbit *is dead*/*is died*.
E’ triste perché è morto il suo coniglietto.
(Notice that the present perfect form of die is have/has died (with the auxiliary verb have), like all other verbs in the present perfect.)
✓ She died in his arms.
✗ She *is dead* in his arms.
E’ morta tra le sue braccia.
✓ I’m dead on my feet.
Dormo in piedi.
✓ It’s ironic that many artists are more famous dead than alive.
E’ ironico che molti artisti sono più famosi morti che vivi.