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    Is This the Isthmus? Tour – Mexico Part 7

    Wednesday, October 4, 2017
    Merida, Mexico

    A horse drawn carriage in Merida, Mexico.
    A horse drawn carriage in Merida, Mexico.

    During breakfast today, the manager was in full-on chipper / friendly mode, and apologized for all of the crazy drama that had gone down the night before. After I finished eating the “free” breakfast, I grabbed my stuff and started walking out. I smiled and said thanks to the manager, who was sipping a drink. He said, “Thanks, amigo.” I thought he was going to try to pressure me to stay, but surprisingly, he didn’t.

    A burned out logo in Merida, Mexico.
    A burned out logo in Merida, Mexico.

    A photo gallery in the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.
    A photo gallery in the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.

    A bit later, I checked into a bunk bed dorm room at the Hostel Catedral, which was really clean with a friendly staff. In sharp contrast to the dilapidated House of Horrors family-run nightmare I had just escaped, the Hostel Catedral was an actual professionally run business. After a short nap, I walked a few blocks east to the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan, a small, shiny museum that, fortunately, really knows how to blast the air con! This place is chock-full of colorful and vivid sculptures, paintings, clothing and way more from throughout Mexico, with an emphasis on the Yucatan peninsula.

    Hand-stitched clothing in the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.
    Hand-stitched clothing in the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.

    Grotesque masks in the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.
    Grotesque masks in the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.

    “The mission of the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan (MAPY) is to strengthen the image of Mexico’s great master artists–as well as the folk artists of Yucatan–through the rescue, preservation, study and dissemination of their works. In addition to an introductory room, a room for temporary exhibits and a gift shop on the ground floor, MAPY has six exhibition rooms on the top floor, including Popular Art, Costume and the Art of Weaving, Yucatan Image, Sacred Spaces, Diversity in Art, Earth Gift and Perishable Techniques.”–MAPY

    Display cases upstairs at the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.
    Display cases upstairs at the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.

    A vividly colored dragon leaps into your face at the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.
    A vividly colored dragon leaps into your face at the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.

    Next, I walked briskly over to the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo, which was due to close in 90 minutes. I arrived just in time to take a quick look-see at a bunch of works by Mexico’s most famous artists. “The Museo de Arte Contemporáneo is the only museum dedicated to promoting modern and contemporary Mexican and international art. Every three months, its 15 temporary exhibition halls are renewed at the same time. These halls document and expose a myriad of avant-garde artistic expressions produced from the beginning of the 20th century up to the current day.

    Skeletons brandish brews at the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.
    Skeletons brandish brews at the Museo de Arte Popular de Yucatan in Merida, Mexico.

    Nachos and cheese in Merida, Mexico.
    Nachos and cheese in Merida, Mexico.

    “The building also has two galleries and four permanent rooms, where the work of three great figures of Yucatan art–Fernando Castro Pacheco, Fernando García Ponce and Gabriel Ramírez Aznar–are exhibited. The museum annually receives an average of 72,000 visitors.”–MACAY. Unfortunately, this museum has a strict no photography policy, and the guards watch you like a hawk. One time, I accidentally put one toe over the red line on the floor in front of a painting, and the guard asked me to move my foot back a little. Seriously.

    Words and photos ©2017 Arcane Candy.

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