My continuing search for hidden gems has, after a forum request for hidden gems I haven’t yet found, turned up another little treasure. In a fairly non-descript street, slightly off the beaten tourist trail stands a fairly non descript building. Although, it has to be said, more people venture through this once seedy and slightly risky part of the Distrito Federal these days than just a year or three ago. The Sunday ciclothon route goes past this building most weeks.
But you perhaps wouldn’t stop and venture inside unless you knew what to expect. You’d be far more likely to stop and venture inside the Church of La Nuestra Señora de San Loreto, which sits on the very next block. And so you should by the way. It’s one of the most fabulous interiors of any religious structure in the city.
But back to the mercado in question. Bland it may be from the outside. And it’s steel and plastic 1930’s interior construction is nothing that would particularly catch your eye either. What it does have to offer visitors though, are huge murals painted on the walls and ceilings at the many points of entry into the market place. Are they by Rivera? Orozco? Siqueiro? No, I don’t think so. They decorate palaces when they aren’t busy constructing artistic monuments to themselves.
The murals in this market were painted by students. But before you lose interest, they were students of Rivera, working under his supervision. And jolly good work they did too. I’m sure Diego was impressed. Although artists do tend to be a bit temperamental, so maybe not. Anyway, the mercado has now duly been added to my Bing map as place 32, and the photos are here on Flickr. You can read more about the mercado on Wikipedia.