Sunday, November 16, 2014

Capturing Movement in Mexico City

Mexico City, Tenochtitlan, a huge living sculpture, a built environment whose immediacy sits on the surface of a dense and teeming historicity. The land, a bowl surrounded by mountains, sinks as it evolves, sculpted by tectonic and human forces that slide, accrete, press, and tunnel. South: Chinampas, a living collaboration of humans and nature. North: Teotihuacan, the collaboration of humans and heaven. In the Centro Historico the monumental Zocalo lies juxtaposed, pulsing between palaces and ruined temples, teeming markets and packed streets.




People here join and shape the living urban sculpture, a millennial continuum of movement: Hurried, clustered, selling, strolling, digging, parking, building. Climbing the stairs of innumerable churches, government buildings, markets, monuments, subways. opening and closing a million windows and doors of a million apartments and cars. Green spaces, plazas, fountains, roadways, murals, graffiti, all moving through growth, flow, stretching, covering, adding to the fabric of the city. And always, the slow movement downward of a city sinking into the lake that is its foundation.






Movement has always been a part of this city. The God of Earthquakes, Olin, is also the god of movement. The symbol for Olin, which is also the symbol for earthquakes and movement, can be found in all kinds of iconography in and around Mexico City. As we learn more about how this city moves, it is fascinating to see that an understanding of movement has always been important to the people living here. 




9 comments:

  1. Great essay! It explains movement on so many different levels, and the fact that it can exist all in one place, like a city. –from Tess Velasquez, MET IS 380 Group 1 Student

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  2. Makes you feel the pulse of the landscape.

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  3. It shows multiple scales of movements. It also hints the movements that create human trails and stain. It shows the movements in bigger scale that show the characteristics of the geographical significance. All these different scale of movements create the evidence of human landscapes.

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  4. Once again, a beautiful picture painted through your words! Movement is experienced and visualized. A city full of culture and history with constant movement. Would love to visit one day!

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  5. This post was a nice reminder of palimpsest. The first photo that sparked that was the 5th one, but after some reflection, I started to think of the 2nd one as a form of "cultural palimpsest". The idea that today's protest movements are standing on the shoulders of the giants before them really struck a chord with me. I wonder if this location has a history of protests like some European squares do ? In that case they could be literally standing in dust made of follicles of protestors before them!
    Kayali Lenssen-Spiller - IS380 - Group 1

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  6. Love the connection between the history of the city, the physical location of the city, and the movement of the city now and over time!

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  7. In the second picture in the second set, I didn't expect to think of urban decay as movement; as old buildings crumble (a form of movement) new buildings grow out of it. Traditionally a palimpsest form of renewal, but I was thinking more along the lines of how shapes (e.g. building) shift and move or time.

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  8. In my view it is a good article because it makes an analysis of the city of mexico in general and how the movement is a feature as this is represented in every way, as people, transport, tremors and all possible forms part of the environment but it costing the city slowly sinking, is like a city wear without taking into account

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  9. It's great to know about the urban flow from Mexico city

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