In mid-November I went to Guadalajara and, despite the fact that my main objective was to experience their art week, I was amazed at how much I enjoyed being in Guadalajara lands.
As part of the fair agenda material station, we visited the studios of renowned local artists Jorge Méndez Blake, Eduardo Sarabia and José Dávila and were invited to a dinner at Gabriel Rico’s studio by the OMR Gallery. For me, these encounters are vital in the art world because they lead you to discover or rethink paradigms and show you that learning and change are “something” that happens day after day.
We also had the opportunity to go to the space of Cayman Project which is dedicated to contemporary art and to discover the Collective Soul Collection of the great businessmen of “CANADÁ” shoe stores, Aurelio López Rocha and ‘Pepis’ Martínez. Guadalajara is a city that surprises me year after year because the projects dedicated to promoting art from the most classical to the contemporary never stop.
The truth is that I ate deliciously, I really enjoyed the people and my stay thanks to the fact that I had a wonderful resting place. I stayed in the Grand Fiesta Americana Country Club of Guadalajara in the midtown where they treated me like a queen.
The rooms are newly remodeled, the amenities are first class, the breakfasts are room service They are great and come to your room with a little vase with a new flower every day. These kinds of little details and quality care are what make all the difference when you stay at a hotel when you are working.
In my case, attending a fair is the same as being at events all the time; standing for more than 9 hours or crossing the city from one side to another to have meetings…. I ended up exhausted and without a doubt it was a relief to know that at the end of the day a bed was waiting for me in which I could rest a hundred and with an incomparable treatment. Every time I come back to GDL, I’m going to stay in the same place.
Yes, the capital of Guadalajara is surprising for many things, from its food, its music or folklore, but for me this trip was extraordinary due to these highlights:
This treasure is a must if you go to Guadalajara. The Cabins Museum It is not only monumental in terms of its architecture, but also for the quality of its exhibitions, planned from the perspective of the brilliant curator Víctor Palacios. To that, add a walk through the 57 frescoes of the Main Chapel made by the muralist Jose Clemente Orozco between 1937 and 1939. It is very moving to sit in that space, look up and lose yourself in these works… The impact that the museum leaves on you is instantaneous.
This jewel has been protected by UNESCO since 1997 due to its historical and cultural importance and I will explain why: The museum’s headquarters used to be the Hospicio Cabañas and its origins date back to 1796, when Bishop Juan Cruz Ruiz de Cabañas y Crespo asked Manuel Tolsá to design a building that would function as a shelter.
Tolsá asked his student José Gutiérrez to take charge of the architectural project and as a result, the neoclassical style was the protagonist. Since it opened its doors in 1810 until today, the site has witnessed the most important social and political events in the country. Can you imagine all the stories this 212-year-old place could tell us?
In 1937 the Government of Jalisco invited José Clemente Orozco to paint the interior of the Main Chapel, since in addition to being one of the most important artists of those years at the national level (he rubbed shoulders with Diego Rivera, Siqueiros and other talented artists) , was from Jalisco. I swear that after seeing the mural “El hombre en llamas” and the other 56 live, you will feel why muralism was so important in the artistic life of Mexico.
Without a doubt, visiting the Cabañas Museum is an activity that will stimulate all your senses.
The Suro Ceramic Factory
One of the trades that intrigues me the most is ceramics. The patience and mastery that must be had to create pieces with a material that is as fragile as it is incredible is totally admirable and in Guadalajara is one of my favorite ceramic places: the factory of suro ceramics.
Although it originated in Tlaquepaque in 1951 (about 20 minutes from the capital of Jalisco), it was not until the 1990s that Luis Miguel and José Noé Suro began working with visual artists to produce pieces that followed traditional ceramic techniques. but also include other trades.
Today, the works that come out of its ovens have materials as diverse as bronze, aluminum, fiberglass, blown glass, wood or steel (although there will surely be others) and are destined for the kitchen of a home, a space in a museum anywhere in the world or also join the collection that the same factory has been creating over the years dedicated to contemporary art.
If you have the opportunity to visit it, seriously don’t miss it, you are going to have a lot of fun exploring all the ways this trade can exist.
The Houses of Barragan
And to close with a flourish to reconfirm that Jalisco is the cradle of icons of Mexican creativity: did you know that there is a ruta to know the houses of the architect Luis Barragán? It sure is a dream for those who are passionate about architecture.
Luis Barragán is famous throughout the world for his architectural style based on influences from both his native Mazamitla, Moorish, Mediterranean and European influences, as well as the French writer, artist and landscape designer Ferdinand Bac, who inspired him from the beginning of his career.
Between 1920 and 1930, an architectural style made in Mexico began to sound in the country, that of the “Escuela Tapatía” which was headed by Barragán and other architects from Guadalajara.
Life has not given me when I am in Guadalajara to be able to do the tour, but I really want to tour the city with experts who tell me how Barragán left a legacy that is recognized worldwide.
What I have seen or visited is the House Study of José Clemente Orozcothe wonderful “Red Park” and Casa Franco (one of the headquarters of the gallery Voyage Four), all of them designed or created with the collaboration of Barragán.
Whether in a group tour or to your liking, I invite you to make time when you are in Guadalajara and marvel at the genius of Barragán.
These lands from Guadalajara do not cease to amaze me, every time I get to know more I realize that in this city it is synonymous with quality from the gastronomy, the artists, the architecture, the artisan workshops, the tequila, the historical legacy, important monuments, even the good hotel, business center and themes of the new contemporary era.
Gallery owner and cultural promoter
Photographs courtesy of Karen Huber and internet