A cultural mecca, Mexico City has plenty to offer museumgoers. From the anthropological treasures to contemporary art, you’re sure to find something that captivates even the hardest to impress world traveler. Here are my top three suggestions.
Paseo de la Reforma No. 51, Col. Bosque de Chapultepec, Del. Miguel Hidalgo, C.P. 11580
Mexico City’s premier contemporary art museum, Museo Tamayo produces innovative exhibitions with pieces from its modern and contemporary art collection, as well as the work of its founder Rufino Tamayo. The museum is also committed to supporting arts research and education programs. Current exhibitions include Cyclorama, a look into the practice of five artists interested in landscape and history as forms of representation and mediation, and Trisha Brown: Floor of the Forest, an exploration of one of the most original and innovative figures of contemporary dance, whose groundbreaking work redefined choreographic practice in the 1960s and 1970s.
Museo Nacional de Anthropologia
Av. Paseo de la Reforma y calzada Gandhi s/n, Col. Chapultepec Polanco, Delegación Miguel Hidalgo, C.P. 11560
Mexico’s National Museum of Anthropology contains one of the world’s largest collections of archaeological and anthropological artifacts from pre-Hispanic Mayan civilizations to the Spanish conquest. The museum is known for its modern architecture (designed by Pedro Ramirez Vazquez); the stunning umbrella roof is supported by a single column representing a mythological tree, which was an important symbol to the pre-Hispanic native populations. Each of the exhibition areas contains artifacts from a particular geographic region or culture, including Teotihuacan, Toltec, Aztec, Mixtec, Zapotec, Olmec, and Maya. A highlight of the museum is the Aztec Calendar, Piedra del Sol (Stone of the Sun), which is frequently compared to the Mayan Calendar.
Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra 303 Granada, Miguel Hidalgo, 11529
Owned by the Carlos Slim Foundation, the Museo Soumaya houses the extensive art (mostly 19th and 20th century), religious relics, historical documents, and coin collection of Carlos Slim and his late wife, Soumaya. The museum’s current building (constructed in 2011) is as famous as the collection it contains. The silver, cloud-like structure was designed by the Mexican architect Fernando Romero (Slim’s son in law), and engineered with assistance from Ove Arup and Frank Gehry.
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