A Desire to Be Seen

The buildings’ stories, not just their architectural qualities, are the focus of the exhibition.

Occupy the Landscape (2022) Sonia Madrigal. Courtesy of the MAK Center.

During a talk about Reflejos de Zohn: Guadalajara en edificios e imágenes, cocurator Lorena Canales asked me if I had ever been to Guadalajara. I said yes, but it was more like a no—I haven’t been in over ten years. Recently, interest in Mexican design and architecture has attracted visitors to specific landmarks and little-known buildings that illustrate the country’s architectural legacy and contemporary design scene. Even though the rest of the country has a vast catalog of architecture, these visitors’ focus—as well as my own—has largely been on Mexico City. That’s where the best-known buildings are: the Teotihuacán pyramid complex, the Museo Tamayo, the Casa-Estudio Luis Barragán. Mimi Zeiger, cocurator of Reflejos de Zohn, said that this bias was in part what spurred her and her cocurators’ desire to draw attention to Guadalajara, Mexico’s second-largest metropolitan area, by highlighting the work of archit…

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