ARCHITECTURE

In the beginning, to quote Diego Rivera, “…when bombs threatened our lives and painting seemed somewhat extravagant, Frida and I started to run an odd sort of ranch. There, we intended to produce our own foodstuffs: milk, honey and vegetables, while preparing to build our museum… The place we chose was near Coyoacán; indeed, it was on top of a layer of lava. The cacti emerged profusely from the cracks between the rocks. Nature had made the landscape there as if on purpose, to fulfill our wishes, and I decided that our house would co-exist in harmony with her work.”

In 1940, Diego Rivera traveled to San Francisco, where he stayed until February 1941. Inspired by industrial development in the United States and also aware of his advanced age, reflecting on his legacy as an artist, the painter modified his concept of the ranch and decided to raise a temple where his collection of Pre-Colombian art would be displayed.

And so, the project was launched in 1942. Diego Rivera invited his friend, the functionalist architect Juan O’Gorman, to accompany him on this adventure. He had met the American architect Frank Lloyd Wright and was influenced by his concept of organic architecture, one that complemented Rivera’s ideal to perfection: the integration of the landscape with the construction of the Anahuacalli, thus unifying functionality with pre-Hispanic cosmogony.

From 1942 to 1957, the painter dedicated a great deal of his time and money to the construction of Anahuacalli. In August 1955, paperwork was signed constituting a fund for the administration of the Museum. In 1957, Rivera passed away; his friend and patron Dolores Olmedo Patiño generously took on the financial burden and responsibility for the completion of this magnificent work. With the collaboration of Ruth Rivera (the painter’s youngest daughter), Juan O’Gorman, and the poet Carlos Pellicer -who completed the curatorship of the first floor- the Anahuacalli first opened its doors to the public in the year 1964.

In the beginning, to quote Diego Rivera, “…when bombs threatened our lives and painting seemed somewhat extravagant, Frida and I started to run an odd sort of ranch. There, we intended to produce our own foodstuffs: milk, honey and vegetables, while preparing to build our museum… The place we chose was near Coyoacán; indeed, it was on top of a layer of lava. The cacti emerged profusely from the cracks between the rocks. Nature had made the landscape there as if on purpose, to fulfill our wishes, and I decided that our house would co-exist in harmony with her work.”

In 1940, Diego Rivera traveled to San Francisco, where he stayed until February 1941. Inspired by industrial development in the United States and also aware of his advanced age, reflecting on his legacy as an artist, the painter modified his concept of the ranch and decided to raise a temple where his collection of Pre-Colombian art would be displayed.

And so, the project was launched in 1942. Diego Rivera invited his friend, the functionalist architect Juan O’Gorman, to accompany him on this adventure. He had met the American architect Frank Lloyd Wright and was influenced by his concept of organic architecture, one that complemented Rivera’s ideal to perfection: the integration of the landscape with the construction of the Anahuacalli, thus unifying functionality with pre-Hispanic cosmogony.

From 1942 to 1957, the painter dedicated a great deal of his time and money to the construction of Anahuacalli. In August 1955, paperwork was signed constituting a fund for the administration of the Museum. In 1957, Rivera passed away; his friend and patron Dolores Olmedo Patiño generously took on the financial burden and responsibility for the completion of this magnificent work. With the collaboration of Ruth Rivera (the painter’s youngest daughter), Juan O’Gorman, and the poet Carlos Pellicer -who completed the curatorship of the first floor- the Anahuacalli first opened its doors to the public in the year 1964.