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Mexican Modern: The Sunnylands Fountain in Rancho Mirage

February 20, 2017 | 9:00 am - 10:00 am |


When Walter and Leonore Annenberg met with architect A. Quincy Jones in 1963 to discuss their vision for an ambitious desert estate they requested that the home reflect what they called a “Mayan influence.” Together, they achieved that goal. On a trip to Mexico City in 1967, Walter and Leonore Annenberg saw the monumental 40-foot bronze columnar-shaped fountain on the patio of the Museo Nacional de Antropología. The column’s intricately carved relief depicting the history of Mexico from its ancient past to the twentieth century captivated the Annenbergs. They commissioned the artists who made the original, brothers José and Tomás Chávez Morado, to create a nearly half-scale bronze column of the same design for Sunnylands. Incorporating Mexican narrative art into the Sunnylands aesthetic paralleled a design trend occurring in Mexico during the midcentury: architects incorporated murals and sculpture executed in the Mexican School style into their sleek new building designs.

In this presentation, Anne Rowe, Sunnylands director of collections and exhibitions, will explore the fountain within the context of the phenomenon of integración plástica or, integration of art, in modern Mexican buildings and how the muralist movement contributed to the Mexican School aesthetic which was popular with architects. The Chávez Morado brothers were among an elite group of artists collaborating with notable Mexican architects to rebuild Mexico City during the midcentury period. The presentation will also explore their particular contribution to integración plástica and will preview the world debut exhibition of their work outside Mexico to open at Sunnylands in September 2017.

For more information please visit http://www.pacificstandardtime.org/en/exhibitions/exhibit/view/Carved-Narrative-Los-Hermonos

Event Restrictions | Special Instructions
The entrance to the Annenberg Theater is located behind the Annenberg Theater Box Office adjacent to the museum’s North Parking Lot. Ample free public parking is available in the public garage across from Palm Springs Art Museum.


February 20, 2017
9:00 am - 10:00 am
Event Categories:
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Additional Information

All ages
Photography Credits
The Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands


Modernism Week


Palm Springs Art Museum Annenberg Theater
101 N Museum Drive
Palm Springs, CA 92262 United States