Details

Keywords Change this

Latin American Functionalism

Project timeline

1929 – 1931

Type

Museum

Location Change this

Colonia San Ángel Inn. Álvaro Obregón
Mexico City D.F. Mexico City
Mexico

Current state

Original

Architect Change this

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Article last edited by Bostjan on
March 01st, 2016

House Diego and Frida Change this

Mexico City, Mexico
by Juan O'Gorman Change this
1 of 11

Description Change this

House-Studio of Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo is one of the most important cultural landmarks of Mexico City, both for being the place of residence and studios of two of the most important artists of the twentieth century, as well as being the first construction of the modern movement in the American continent. The work caused a heated controversy in the 1930s by combining organic Mexican architecture and architectural murals with functionalism. So was the breaking of all the aesthetic paradigms of architecture in Mexico until then, to incorporate such blunt theories and thoughts as most avant-garde architects (as Le Corbusier) were developing on the European continent. Thoughts such as the rational use of materials, analysis of the functioning of ideal spaces and the adequacy of them to accomodate activities that took place within them - ideas that were radical at first but eventually were assimilated into the worldwide architectural community. These houses were made possible with minimum cost and effort.

Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera

The Mexican painter and architect Juan O'Gorman, a personal friend of Diego Rivera, was in charge of the project. The history of Home-Studio begins when O'Gorman buys two plots. To show the place to Rivera, the architect offered to sell it at the same price as if he had purchased the buildings of his home and studio. Diego Rivera agreed and also made it a home for his wife, Frida Kahlo. There, Frida consolidated her painting career to create works as a painter "What Gave Me Water", "The Watchful Eye", "The Late Dimas" and "The Two Fridas." For his part, Diego painted about three thousand works in the studio, including most of his easel work. This particular space was to house their collection of skulls and Judas, as well as many works of pre-Columbian art and Mexican crafts. The muralist stayed in that house until the day of his death on November 24, 1957. After their death, the two houses were inherited her daughter, Ruth Rivera Marin, who donated them to the Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes.

The House

O Gorman, heir to the Dutch school of architecture and Le Corbusier, specially designed this house for the couple, which is one of the first examples of functionalist architecture. Taking the fundamental ideas of Le Corbusier on the machinery of living and its 5 points, and reconsider the conditions experienced in Mexico, housing problems resolved with the least cost. He created a home made up of two concrete blocks smooth, independent of one another and linked by a narrow bridge that joins the rooftops. A block is red and represents Diego. The other is blue, representing Frida. The bridge that unites them is the bond of love between them. It also complies with the 5 points above Le Corbusier, with the house on stilts, free plants, free facades, garden terrace and elongated windows. The play shows its skeleton of steel pipes, escalators and materials economy. In turn, is a house with his Mexican colors, textures and floors of their encirclement of cactus. It's a factory, a machine for living, the machinery of art where Frida and Diego produced a world aesthetic large in Mexico, its history, its people, their problems and their dreams. The house consists of two blocks binoculars, simple, plain concrete with large windows. In block red Diego Rivera had his studio and its rooms, while in the block were the blue spaces of Frida Kahlo. The work is conceived as a machine that looks light. The vents are located to the north picked up the diffused light that allows a uniform illumination and does not alter the colors on the painting. Through the large mullioned windows of the slabs are trying to achieve a superior lighting control. An outside staircase from a window located on the second floor of the block, giving the blue roof. There used to take Frida sunbathing. A cactus fence surrounding the building and relates to the environment.

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