Museo de Arte Prehispánico de México Rufino Tamayo • Museum, Colonial Mansion • (J)
Renowned Oaxacan abstract painter Rufino Tamayo founded this museum — a cultural highlight of the city — in 1975 to house his private collection of pre-Hispanic Méxcian art, which he donated to the state and people of Oaxaca before his death in 1991. The museum is installed in a beautiful 18th-century colonial mansion, La Casa de Villaraza, named for Francisco Antonio Villaraza, a prominent Spanish official at the time. Unlike most museums, which treat and exhibit pre-colonial works of art as artifacts, with an emphasis on the archeological, each piece here is treated and exhibited as an object of creative expression, with an emphasis on the aesthetic.
- Morelos 503, west of Porfirio Díaz; North of Independencia, Centro Histórico; Mon, Wed - Sat, 10 am – 2 pm & 4 – 7 pm, Sun 10 am – 3 pm, closed Tue; Mex$35; phone 951-516-4750, 951-516-7617.
Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Oaxaca • Museum, Colonial Mansion • (K)
Exhibiting collections from contemporary artists of local, national, and even international renown, the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Oaxaca, or MACO for short, is housed in a stunning 18th-century colonial mansion, named La Casa de Cortés for the famous conquistador Hernán Cortés, even though he never lived here. The quality of the exhibits here is usually high, but because they rotate, it's hit or miss.
- Alcalá 202, half block north of Morelos; North of Independencia, Centro Histórico; Wed - Mon 10:30 am - 8 pm, closed Tue; Mex$20, Sundays & holidays free; phone 951-514-2228, 951-514-1055; www.museomaco.com.
- Southwest corner Cinco de Mayo & Abasolo.; North of Independencia, Centro Histórico; free.
- Morelos, east of Cinco de Mayo.; North of Independencia, Centro Histórico; free.