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Mexico

Frida Escobedo's Serpentine Pavilion Photographed by Laurian Ghinitoiu

14:00 - 13 June, 2018
Frida Escobedo's Serpentine Pavilion Photographed by Laurian Ghinitoiu, © Laurian Ghinitoiu
© Laurian Ghinitoiu

Following the opening of the 2018 Serpentine Pavillion this week, designed by Mexican architect Frida Escobedo, photographer Laurian Ghinitoiu has turned his lens to London. Ghinitoiu’s images, which you can discover below, capture the elemental beauty of Escobedo’s pavilion, defined by a permeable cement tile façade inspired by Mexican celosias.

Fusing elements typical to Mexican architecture with local London references, the pavilion centers on a courtyard enclosed by two rectangular volumes constructed using the characteristic celosia method.

© Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu + 30

These Are The Latin American Cities With The Best Quality of Life

16:00 - 20 May, 2018
These Are The Latin American Cities With The Best Quality of Life, © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/jikatu/20111772669'>Jimmy Baikovicius [Flickr]</a>, licensed under  <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/">CC BY-SA 2.0</a>. ImageMontevideo, Uruguay
© Jimmy Baikovicius [Flickr], licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0. ImageMontevideo, Uruguay

Mercer, the multinational consultancy recently announced that Vienna, Austria has been ranked as the city with the best quality of life in the world, for the ninth year in a row. In a ranking that is dominated by European cities in the highest positions, this year Vancouver (5th), Singapore (25th) and Port Louis (83rd) are the highest-ranking cities in North America, Asia, and Africa, respectively. 

So, what is happening in Latin America? Montevideo, the capital of Uruguay, once again occupies the top position. "Although they are challenged by economic and political turmoil," experts at the consultancy explain, "cities in emerging markets are catching up with major cities, after decades of investment in infrastructure, recreational facilities, and housing for the purpose of attracting talent and multinational businesses," they add.  

In its twentieth edition, the consultancy, which specializes in advising multinational companies in employee transfers, evaluates more than 450 cities around the world, analyzing 39 factors divided into 10 categories, including political and economic environment, socio-cultural status, hygiene, educational institutions, leisure, housing, the market, and natural disasters.

© <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/beck32/7175474491'>Roberto C. [Flickr]</a>, licensed under <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/">CC BY-ND 2.0</a>. ImageMontevideo, Uruguay © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/deensel/39921091035'>Deensel [Flickr]</a>, licensed under <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">CC BY 2.0</a>. ImageBuenos Aires, Argentina © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/armandolobos/23193056943'>a l o b o s [Flickr]</a>, licensed under <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">CC BY-NC-ND 2.0</a>. ImageSantiago, Chile © <a href=https://www.flickr.com/photos/bz3rk/5731101473'>James Willamor [Flickr]</a>, licensed under <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/">CC BY-SA 2.0</a>. ImageSan Juan, Puerto Rico + 11

Mexico City's Controversial Airport Project Could Be a Preservation Site for a Collection of Modernist Murals

09:30 - 8 May, 2018
Mexico City's Controversial Airport Project Could Be a Preservation Site for a Collection of Modernist Murals, Centro SCOP in Mexico City was shuttered after a series of devastating earthquakes. A new exhibition proposes rehousing its historically significant murals. Image Courtesy of Pablo López Luz/ Archivo Diseño y Arquitectura
Centro SCOP in Mexico City was shuttered after a series of devastating earthquakes. A new exhibition proposes rehousing its historically significant murals. Image Courtesy of Pablo López Luz/ Archivo Diseño y Arquitectura

This article was originally published by Metropolis Magazine as "How a Small Mexico City Exhibition Fueled a Debate About Preservation and Power."

It’s a slate-gray day in Mexico City’s Colonia Narvarte neighborhood and mounting gusts signal imminent rain. Centro SCOP, a sprawling bureaucratic complex, rises sharply against this bleak backdrop. The building is a masterful, if not intimidating, example of Mexican Modernism, an H-shaped assemblage of muscular concrete volumes designed by architect Carlos Lazo, covered in an acre-and-a-half of vibrant mosaic murals.

At its peak, the building accommodated more than 3,000 workers for the Secretariat of Communications and Transportation (SCT). Today, save a security guard in its gatehouse, it is empty.

As part of the Archivo exhibition, FR-EE has proposed relocating Centro SCOP's murals to the airport it is co-designing with Foster + Partners. Image Courtesy of FR-EE Fernando Romero Enterprises/ Archivo Diseño y Arquitectura An artist's rendering of Centro SCOP. Image Courtesy of Secretaría de Comunicaciones y Transportes (SCT)/ Archivo Diseño y Arquitectura An image of Centro SCOP, shortly after it opened in the mid 1950s. Image Courtesy of personal archive of Carlos Lazo Barreiro / Archivo General de la Nación/ Archivo Diseño y Arquitectura Juan O'Gorman's "Canto a La Patria (Parte 1)" (left) and "Independencia y Progreso" (right). Image Courtesy of Pablo López Luz/ Archivo Diseño y Arquitectura + 26

Mexican Houses That Show the Many Ways to Use Bricks

12:00 - 6 May, 2018
Mexican Houses That Show the Many Ways to Use Bricks, © Patrick Lopez
© Patrick Lopez

© Carlos Berdejo Mandujano © César Béjar © Ricardo Rodríguez Cortesía de Ariel Valenzuela + Diego Ledesma + 12

This week we present a selection of the best images of brick houses published on our site. These 11 Mexican projects reveal the diversity of expression that architects in the country have achieved through creative arrangements of the brick modules. read on for a selection of images from prominent photographers such as Carlos Berdejo MandujanoOnnis Luque, and Patrick Lopez.

Social Design Work in Mexico Brings Community, Solidarity and Local Materials Together

14:00 - 5 May, 2018
Social Design Work in Mexico Brings Community, Solidarity and Local Materials Together, Cortesía de Colectivo CHOPEkE
Cortesía de Colectivo CHOPEkE

This project emerged during the summer of 2015, when CHOPEkE Collective, together with Paúl Pérez, a seminarian and active member of the group, visited the community of Santa Luisa de Marillac, located in the central periphery of Ciudad Juárez. At the time, members of the community had an "unworthy" space -as they called it- for their meetings and spiritual activities. 

What It’s Like to be an Architect who Doesn’t Design Buildings

06:00 - 6 April, 2018
What It’s Like to be an Architect who Doesn’t Design Buildings, Han Zhang along with her team at <a href="http://www.archdaily.cn">ArchDaily China</a>. Image Courtesy of Han Zhang
Han Zhang along with her team at ArchDaily China. Image Courtesy of Han Zhang

There's an old, weary tune that people sing to caution against being an architect: the long years of academic training, the studio work that takes away from sleep, and the small job market in which too many people are vying for the same positions. When you finally get going, the work is trying as well. Many spend months or even years working on the computer and doing models before seeing any of the designs become concrete. If you're talking about the grind, architects know this well enough from their training, and this time of ceaseless endeavor in the workplace only adds to that despair.

Which is why more and more architects are branching out. Better hours, more interesting opportunities, and a chance to do more than just build models. Furthermore, the skills you learn as an architect, such as being sensitive to space, and being able to grasp the cultural and societal demands of a place, can be put to use in rather interesting ways. Here, 3 editors at ArchDaily talk about being an architect, why they stopped designing buildings, and what they do in their work now. 

Mexican Water-Managing Public Space Triumphs in Global LafargeHolcim Awards 2018

12:30 - 28 March, 2018
Mexican Water-Managing Public Space Triumphs in Global LafargeHolcim Awards 2018, Winning schemes were situated in Mexico, Niger, and the USA. Image Courtesy of Global LafargeHolcim Awards
Winning schemes were situated in Mexico, Niger, and the USA. Image Courtesy of Global LafargeHolcim Awards

Results have been announced for the 5th Global LafargeHolcim Awards for Sustainable Construction, with three women-led teams awarded the gold, silver, and bronze positions. The design competition asked participants to speculate on future methods of balancing environmental performance, social responsibility and economic growth, “exemplifying architectural excellence and a high degree of transferability.”

The competition attracted over 5,000 submissions from 131 countries. Having been regionally assessed by juries in Europe, North America, Latin America, the Middle East/Africa and Asia Pacific, 55 successful proposals were entered for the global awards, where six winning schemes were selected.

Gold Medal: Hydropuncture in Mexico. Image Courtesy of Global LafargeHolcim Awards Silver Medal: Legacy Restored in Niger. Image Courtesy of Global LafargeHolcim Awards Bronze Medal: Grassroots Microgrid in Michigan. Image Courtesy of Global LafargeHolcim Awards Territorial Figure: Acknowledgment and Next Generation Prize Winner. Image Courtesy of Global LafargeHolcim Awards + 67

Library at Tecnológico de Monterrey / Sasaki

11:00 - 22 March, 2018
© Sasaki
© Sasaki

© Sasaki © Sasaki © Sasaki © Sasaki + 14

  • Architects

  • Location

    Monterrey, Nuevo León, Mexico
  • Design Team

    Isabel Zempel, Caroline Braga, Mauricio Gomez, Letitia Tormay, Nicholas Steinkraus, Nina Chase, Zhangkan Zhou
  • Architects of Record

    GLR Arquitectos, RDLP Arquitectos
  • Client

  • Area

    17000.0 m2
  • Project Year

    2017
  • Photographs

Contemporary Architecture Captured by Mexican Photographers

08:00 - 17 March, 2018
via Portada
via Portada

The history of Mexican photography has contributed to highlighting Mexico's presence in the world. Photographers like Elsa Medina, Lola Álvarez Bravo, Graciela Iturbide, Maya Goded, and Juan Rulfo have masterfully portrayed the life of the buildings, houses and the streets of a rapidly built, nineteenth-century Mexico. 

As a consequence, the contemporary scene of Mexican photography has become a fundamental tool for architecture and has contributed to a better visual understanding of the works that are erected every day.

Photography and architecture are two disciplines that go hand in hand and whose relationship has been reinforced thanks to the digital tools that we currently have. For that reason, we have compiled the work of contemporary Mexican photographers who record our walk through the world we live in and contribute to constructing the image of contemporary Mexico. 

The Curious Design Enigmas of Chichén Itzá's Temple of Kukulkán

09:30 - 16 March, 2018
The Curious Design Enigmas of Chichén Itzá's Temple of Kukulkán, Courtesy of Ezra Schwartz
Courtesy of Ezra Schwartz

This article was originally published by Ezra Schwartz on LinkedIn. It has been reprinted here with permission from the author. 

Following a recent family visit to Chichén Itzá, I became somewhat obsessed with a couple of design enigmas I found there:

Design Enigma 1: The large pyramid in this amazing archeological complex, known as the Temple of Kukulkán, is highly symmetrical. But the first thing I observed when we approached it and stood in front of its west side, is that the structure on top of the pyramid (A above), is not center-aligned relative to the 9 terraces below it, as one would expect*. The visual guides 1 and 2 show the misalignment (images above and below).

Spotlight: Luis Barragán

10:30 - 9 March, 2018
Spotlight: Luis Barragán, Casa Gilardi. Imagevia <a href='https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Casa_Giraldi_Luis_Barragan.JPG'>Wikimedia user Ulises00</a> (public domain)
Casa Gilardi. Imagevia Wikimedia user Ulises00 (public domain)

One of Mexico's greatest architects, Luis Ramiro Barragán Morfín (March 9, 1902 – November 22, 1988) revolutionized modern architecture in the country with his use of bright colors reminiscent of the traditional architecture of Mexico, and with works such as his Casa Barragán, the Chapel of the Capuchinas, the Torres de Satélite, "Los Clubes" (Cuadra San Cristobal and Fuente de los Amantes), and the Casa Gilardi, among many others.

These 6 Firms Are Spearheading the Post-Digital Drawing Craze in Mexico

14:00 - 4 March, 2018
Cortesía de PALMA
Cortesía de PALMA

The hyperrealistic representation of architecture is not a new concept due to the ubiquity of tools that offer the possibility of creating perplexing images with photographs. However, those who defend the expressive capacity of hand drawings have found ways to take advantage of the digital tools of the last decades to represent their architectural projects. 

A new group of young Mexican architects is committed to a form of representation that relies on tools from our era, simultaneously taking up concepts from the sixties and seventies, where the technique of collage made it possible to face the frustrating reality that took place at the time to represent the utopias thought up by architects. 

Benjamín Romano: "I Focus on Improving the Building"

09:30 - 23 February, 2018
Torre Reforma. Image © Alfonso Merchand
Torre Reforma. Image © Alfonso Merchand

Visiting Mexico City several times in recent months enabled me to get to know a number of leading architects there. In the process, I was in turn directed to other architects that were new to me, whom I then discovered were, in fact, the leading and most revered architects in the country according to the local architectural community. I am particularly referring to Alberto Kalach and Mauricio Rocha, whose interviews were published in this column last year, and Benjamín Romano, whose name came up when I asked a number of architects to cite their favorite building from recent years in Mexico City. Along with the absolute favorite, Vasconcelos Library by Kalach, another structure stood out: Torre Reforma, a 57-story office tower, the tallest building in the city. The following conversation with Romano, its architect, took place inside this unusually powerful and inventive structure.

Torre Reforma. Image © Alfonso Merchand Torre Reforma. Image © Alfonso Merchand Torre Reforma. Image © Alfonso Merchand Torre Reforma. Image © Alfonso Merchand + 33

Teddy Cruz Wins 2018 Vilcek Prize in Architecture

06:00 - 7 February, 2018
Teddy Cruz Wins 2018 Vilcek Prize in Architecture, Courtesy of The Vilcek Foundation
Courtesy of The Vilcek Foundation

Each year the Vilcek Foundation selects American immigrant champions of the arts and sciences. This year the 2018 Vilcek Prize in Architecture was awarded to Guatemala-born, and now San Diego-based, professor and architect Teddy Cruz. Cruz uses his past experiences, living in Guatemala during its civil war, to focus his academic and professional career on shaping political and socioeconomic forces.

Félix Candela’s Concrete Shells Through Photographs, Architectural Models and Plans

14:00 - 4 February, 2018
Courtesy of Alexander Eisenschmidt
Courtesy of Alexander Eisenschmidt

Spanish and Mexican architect Félix Candela is widely recognized as one of the most prominent figures in 20th century architecture. His innovative experiments with reinforced concrete produced iconic buildings deemed cascarones, or 'shell structures', such as the Pavilion of Cosmic Rays at UNAM, Mexico City (1951); the Chapel Lomas de Cuernavaca, Cuernavaca (1958); Los Manantiales Restaurant, Xochimilco (1958); and the Palace of Sports for the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City. 

Courtesy of Alexander Eisenschmidt Courtesy of Alexander Eisenschmidt Courtesy of Alexander Eisenschmidt Courtesy of Alexander Eisenschmidt + 18

Top Young North American Firms Win The Architectural League's 2018 Emerging Voices Awards

12:40 - 1 February, 2018
Top Young North American Firms Win The Architectural League's 2018 Emerging Voices Awards, Bruma House; Estado de México, Mexico, 2017 / Fernanda Canales + Claudia Rodríguez. Photography: Rafael Gamo. Image © Fernanda Canales
Bruma House; Estado de México, Mexico, 2017 / Fernanda Canales + Claudia Rodríguez. Photography: Rafael Gamo. Image © Fernanda Canales

The Architectural League of New York has announced the recipients of its 2018 Emerging Voices awards, spotlighting individuals and firms “with distinct design voices and the potential to influence the disciplines of architecture, landscape design, and urbanism.”

Felix Candela's Concrete Shells: An Engineered Architecture for Mexico and Chicago

12:13 - 29 January, 2018
Felix Candela's Concrete Shells: An Engineered Architecture for Mexico and Chicago, Capilla de Palmira (Chapel of Palmira) Lomas de Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mexico, 1958 – 1959
Capilla de Palmira (Chapel of Palmira) Lomas de Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mexico, 1958 – 1959

This exhibition roots Félix Candela (1910-1997) as one of the most prolific architects of the 20th century in his advanced geometric designs and lasting influence in contemporary architecture. It originated through the research of scholar Juan Ignacio del Cueto and is curated by the architectural theorist and designer Alexander Eisenschmidt. The exhibition spotlights Félix Candela’s Concrete Shells through photographs, architectural models, and plans, as well as archival material from his time as a professor at the School of Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago from 1971 to 1978.

Candela exiled to Mexico

Tatiana Bilbao: “Architecture Should Benefit Every Single Human Being on This Planet”

09:30 - 12 January, 2018
Tatiana Bilbao: “Architecture Should Benefit Every Single Human Being on This Planet”, House in Ajijic, Jalostitlán, Mexico, 2010. Image © Iwan Baan
House in Ajijic, Jalostitlán, Mexico, 2010. Image © Iwan Baan

As part of a generation of designers that have, in recent years, put Mexico on the map, Tatiana Bilbao is an architect that is increasingly part of the profession’s global consciousness. But, while some Mexican architects have made their mark with spectacular architecture following the international trend of “iconic” architecture, Bilbao opted instead for a more people-focused approach. In this interview, the latest in Vladimir Belogolovsky’s “City of Ideas” series, Bilbao explains how she got into this type of community-building architecture, her thoughts on architectural form, and her ambitions for the future.

Vladimir Belogolovsky: The more I talk to architects of your generation or my generation, the more it becomes apparent that architecture has absolutely no boundaries. In other words, architecture is not just about buildings. More and more, architecture is about building communities.

Tatiana Bilbao: Absolutely. For me, that is the most important part of architecture. Architecture is not about building a building; architecture is about building a community.

Housing in Ciudad Acuña, Mexico, 2015. Image © Jaime Navarro Bioinnova, Culiacán Rosales, Mexico, 2012. Image © Iwan Baan House in Ajijic, Jalostitlán, Mexico, 2010. Image © Iwan Baan Casa Ventura, San Pedro Garza Garcia, Mexico, 2011. Image © Rory Gardiner + 20