written by:
December 1, 2010

My third day of Mexico City design tourism was one fraught with camera woes. Not only did many of the photos I took on my daylong wander not come through a vexing download (goodbye morning walk through Polanco) but I managed to even leave my camera in the taxi that took me to the massive handicrafts market La Ciudadela! So I've got no photos of that, though I am happy to report that Senor Romero who took me to La Ciudadela and agreed to pick me up an hour and a half later was waiting for me with my untouched camera on the backseat! I did nonetheless get a few snaps of two of the highlights of my trip: a fabulous Mexican meal at the high-end hacienda the San Angel Inn and the Diego Rivera and Frida Kalho house and studios right next door. Have a look.

Here's a view of the house and studio buildings from the San Angel Inn parking lot. The pair of structures were designed by Juan O'Gorman in 1931. It was amongst the first modernist structures in Mexico City.
Here's a view of the house and studio buildings from the San Angel Inn parking lot. The pair of structures were designed by Juan O'Gorman in 1931. It was amongst the first modernist structures in Mexico City.
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Rivera's studio (foreground in red) is connected to Kahlo's (in blue) via a bridge on the roof. The buildings themselves reflect a strong debt to Le Corbusier in their rational form, the fact that they're raised up on pilotis, and the use of the roof as a
Rivera's studio (foreground in red) is connected to Kahlo's (in blue) via a bridge on the roof. The buildings themselves reflect a strong debt to Le Corbusier in their rational form, the fact that they're raised up on pilotis, and the use of the roof as a fifth facade.
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I particularly liked that a fence was done away with in favor of a wall of cacti. Though European modernism is alive and well here, there are so many perfectly Mexican touches, like the use of color and flora, that make it a thoroughly Mexico City buildin
I particularly liked that a fence was done away with in favor of a wall of cacti. Though European modernism is alive and well here, there are so many perfectly Mexican touches, like the use of color and flora, that make it a thoroughly Mexico City building.
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Here's a glimpse of the bridge from the Rivera studio over to the Kahlo side. At the moment the larger Rivera structure is filled with objects from their lives and works, while the blue building is a working gallery.
Here's a glimpse of the bridge from the Rivera studio over to the Kahlo side. At the moment the larger Rivera structure is filled with objects from their lives and works, while the blue building is a working gallery.
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Here's a view of the Rivera side from across the bridge. Moments after I snapped this photo a guard came out and told me to come back to the other side. There's not much of a railing where I was standing and the last thing he wanted was a splattered Ameri
Here's a view of the Rivera side from across the bridge. Moments after I snapped this photo a guard came out and told me to come back to the other side. There's not much of a railing where I was standing and the last thing he wanted was a splattered American on the courtyard below.
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Here's a drawing by Rivera hung on one of the walls. It was in a small bedroom.
Here's a drawing by Rivera hung on one of the walls. It was in a small bedroom.
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The most impressive space was in the red structure and was this double-height studio space. It was full of puppets, sculptures and the materials the pair must have used in their art making.
The most impressive space was in the red structure and was this double-height studio space. It was full of puppets, sculptures and the materials the pair must have used in their art making.
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I could not get over these massive paper-mache people. They looked like they must have been used in some procession.
I could not get over these massive paper-mache people. They looked like they must have been used in some procession.
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Here you can see into the nook off the main space. A painting by Rivera is shown as well as some shelves for the his collections of dolls and other crafts.
Here you can see into the nook off the main space. A painting by Rivera is shown as well as some shelves for the his collections of dolls and other crafts.
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These beautiful green chests held loads of ceramics, some of which appeared to be pre-Hispanic.
These beautiful green chests held loads of ceramics, some of which appeared to be pre-Hispanic.
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Diego's typewriter. Easier to imagine him thundering his orders, but I expect he must of put a few to paper.
Diego's typewriter. Easier to imagine him thundering his orders, but I expect he must of put a few to paper.
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This little side table was next to a small bed. It has all manner of cases and keys on it including a holster for a pistol.
This little side table was next to a small bed. It has all manner of cases and keys on it including a holster for a pistol.
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A drawing of O'Gorman's building. Note that amazing concrete spiral staircase off the one facade.
A drawing of O'Gorman's building. Note that amazing concrete spiral staircase off the one facade.
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After my time at the studio and house I headed over to the San Angel Inn, which served up some of the most amazing food I've had. The sopa Azteca was a highlight of the trip.
After my time at the studio and house I headed over to the San Angel Inn, which served up some of the most amazing food I've had. The sopa Azteca was a highlight of the trip.
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The gorgeous hacienda was no slouch itself. Wandering around in search of the bathroom was never so exciting.
The gorgeous hacienda was no slouch itself. Wandering around in search of the bathroom was never so exciting.
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I ate on the patio out front with some new pals, but those eating inside the courtyard got a special treat. Though these photos get at some of the beauty of the place, they don't reflect its size. The gardens out back are enormous and there are probably e
I ate on the patio out front with some new pals, but those eating inside the courtyard got a special treat. Though these photos get at some of the beauty of the place, they don't reflect its size. The gardens out back are enormous and there are probably eight additional dining rooms all made up in what felt perfectly 18th century Mexican. The structure was turned into a hacienda in 1776.
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Here's a view of the house and studio buildings from the San Angel Inn parking lot. The pair of structures were designed by Juan O'Gorman in 1931. It was amongst the first modernist structures in Mexico City.
Here's a view of the house and studio buildings from the San Angel Inn parking lot. The pair of structures were designed by Juan O'Gorman in 1931. It was amongst the first modernist structures in Mexico City.

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