Av. Paseo de la Reforma s/n, Bosque de Chapultepec I Secc, Miguel Hidalgo, 11100 Ciudad de México, CDMX
55 8647 5530
The Museum of Modern Art, otherwise known as the MAM, is one of the city’s main museums dedicated to displaying and promoting the aesthetic tendencies that have come to influence greatly the current look of our daily lives, now well into the XXI century. The museum is dedicated to exhibiting modern Mexican art, from the 1930s onward, and has a permanent collection that includes a veritable who’s who of XX Mexican art: David Alfaro Siqueiros, Julio Castellanos, Frida Kahlo, José Clemente Orozco, Juan O’Gorman, Diego Rivera, María Izquierdo, Rufino Tamayo, Leonora Carrington, Remedios Varo, and Francisco Toledo, amongst many others. The artists and their artwork aren’t exclusively Mexican, Leonora Carrington and Remedios Varo were born in England and Spain respectively, although they both lived most of their adult life and developed their work in Mexico. Speaking of Remedios Varo, her post-humous retrospective in 1971 has drawn the largest crowds in the museum’s history.
The Museo de Arte Moderno is located a few steps from the main entrance to the first section of the Bosque de Chapultepec, where the two majestic bronze lion sculptures stand guard; the MAM is one of the most important of its kind in Latin America and it offers visitors an insight into the complex evolution of visual arts in Mexico. The artwork on display as part of its permanent collection are paintings and sculptures that are recognized worldwide, the MAM plays an important role in researching, gathering, and promoting modern and contemporary art.
The museum has its origins in the National Museum of Plastic Arts, which was created in 1947 and located inside the Palacio de Bellas Artes as a sort of temporary and small installation, reflecting the relatively small importance that modern art had for curators, who were busy appreciating and promoting Pre-Hispanic and Colonial art. The museum as it’s known today wasn’t actually established til 1964, it was designed by architects Pedro Ramírez Vázques and Carlos A. Cazares, in collaboration with Mexican architect and painter Rafael Mijares Alcérreca. The design of the gardens and walkways was carried out by Juán Siles, under the direction of Mexican artist Helen Escobedo.
Even as the MAM is still not as popular as some of its neighbor museums, especially the National Museum of History and Anthropology, it will surely continue to grow in popularity as people appreciate the artwork of modern and contemporary artists on the same level as those that have been revered since antiquity.