"The Art of Seeing. It is essential to an architect to know how to see: I mean, to see in such a way that the vision is not overpowered by rational analysis." - Luis Barragán
One of Mexico's greatest architects, Luis Ramiro Barragán Morfín (March 9, 1902 – November 22, 1988) revolutionized modern architecture in the country with his use of bright colours reminiscent of the traditional architecture of Casa Barragan, Cuadra san Cristobal, Torres de Satelite and many more.
The most prominent aspects of Barragan’s architecture is the use of flat planes, play of lights (both artificial and natural), play of texture and the play of colour.
Barragan was inspired by Le Corbusier’s style of architecture, he considered him as his master. If critically observing Luis Barragan’s work we can observe some elements of Corbusier present such as the use of materials in the rawest form and designing spaces with linear and horizontal elements.
Barragan considered himself as a landscape architect than an architect who designed spaces, his love for landscape is because of his admiration and love towards the European gardens, this can be seen in his famous work “Casa Barragan”.
The Pritzker winning architect is widely known for his bold use of colours, at his time of practice there were few who considered colour as one of the major elements for enhancing the aesthetic quality of the space, and this element was even complimented with different textures. This brought a tactile feel to the space.
In the postcard, we can see two of his most famous structures which were Casa Barragan and Cuadra san Cristobal; both these villas are regarded as one of the most famous works which Barragan has ever done.
Casa Barragan: In the working-class neighborhood of Tacubaya, this building holding the architects’ residency and design studio played a vital role in the conservation of the surrounding culture. It also pivoted the direction of development in the area. With its extreme use of raw materials to the inhibition of the colors of Mexican architecture like yellow and pink make this a global yet local prodigy. Now declared as a UNESCO heritage site, the décor and detailing of the interiors along with the play of light and shadow creates a magical aura.
Cuadra san Cristoba: The spaces of this project are all about regional symbolism through emotions, geometric abstracts, and calculative movements. With a residence quarter of Egerstrom, the stables Cuadra san Cristobal and the fountain, this property is one of his notable works, with everything falling in harmony. From the measure of the pond depth concerning the digestion canal of a horse brings out the detail to which the architect explores to come out with such marvels in the field. The massive horizontal walls with smaller openings and the clever use of yellow and pink make it a pleasure to walk through.