Photo Walk Nº52 – Street art and unusual architecture off the beaten path

A street full of urban art, a massive library with suspended metal bookshelves and a Moorish-style kiosco

We had lots of fun on Photo Walk Nº52 which took us off the main tourist trails to the Buenavista-Santa Maria La Ribera area. Our first visit was to Mexico City’s largest public library, the Biblioteca de Vasconcelos, a massive building made of concrete, steel and glass and very surprising inside. Its almost half a million books sit on bookshelves suspended from the ceiling and it is surrounded by peaceful gardens.

From there we made our way along the Buenavista-Guerrero corridor where 11 buildings have been painted by 43 artists, some professionally trained and others grafiteros. The local people chose the themes for the artwork in conjunction with the artists and these themes include culture and traditions, ethnic groups, nature, Cuauhtémoc and Moctezuma, Frida Kahlo, justice for the 43 missing students and Aztec symbols among others. We had lots of fun photographing this art and the locals and getting a few action shots and selfies.

Finally, we crossed over Insurgentes and walked to the Kiosco Morisco in the Alameda de Santa Maria La Ribera, a very unusual Moorish-style building designed to be the Mexican stand (very un-Mexican!) at the World Fair event held in New Orleans in 1884. It was later shipped back to Mexico and was originally placed in the Alameda Central park near the Palacio de Bellas Artes and used for the National Lottery draws. When the Hemiciclo de Juárez was built, it was moved to Santa Maria La Ribera and the ironwork structure was restored and painted. With its Islamic-style geometric patterns, this is a popular place for photo shoots, including ours.

Nearby is the Geology Museum dating from the beginning of the 19th Century with an elegant staircase and mosaic floors whose exhibits include the skeletons of a mammoth and dinosaurs. 

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