It’s been some months, so it was time to host another outing for the foreign teachers working in Mexico City.
This time ’round, we chose the Franz Mayer Museum in the Historic Center of Mexico City.
One of the capital’s foremost museums, the Franz Mayer Museum opened in 1986 in a beautifully restored 16th-century building on Plaza de la Santa Veracruz on the north side of La Alameda. The extraordinary 10,000-piece collection of antiques, mostly Mexican objects from the 16th through 19th centuries, was amassed by one man: Franz Mayer. A German immigrant, he adopted Mexico as his home in 1905 and grew rich here. Before his death in 1975, Mayer bequeathed the collection to the country and arranged for its permanent display through a trust with the Banco Nacional. The pieces, mostly utilitarian objects (as opposed to pure art objects), include inlaid and richly carved furniture; an enormous collection of Talavera pottery; gold and silver religious pieces; sculptures; tapestries; rare watches and clocks (the oldest is a 1680 lantern clock); wrought iron; old-master paintings from Europe and Mexico; and 770 Don Quixote volumes, many of which are rare editions or typographically unique. There’s so much here that it may take two visits to absorb it. In the central courtyard, a pleasant cafe serves coffee and light snacks.
Our teacher get-togethers often find us in new and exciting places in Mexico City…well, usually a bar. I thought it might be a good idea to inject a little class into this one. Five of our long time TEFL teachers made it out for the Sunday afternoon affair.
The museum featured a fine display of high crafted silverworks…the likes of which I’ve never seen in Mexico.
The permanent displays include a number of 16th century items such as furniture, paintings, sculptures, and many religious items related to this period in Mexican history.
And of course, the grounds and the cafe were a superb respite from the hustle of Mexico City’s urban crush.