Guardian – Juan Gabriel, the legendary Mexican singer-songwriter , has died suddenly at his home in California. He was 66. Gabriel was Mexico’s leading singer-songwriter and top-selling artist, with sales of more than 100m albums. His ballads about love and heartbreak and bouncy mariachi tunes became hymns throughout Latin America and Spain, as well as with Spanish speakers in the United States.
Daily Mail – A small building in Mexico tells the violent history of treachery and conquest at the great Aztec city of Cholulu – but for hundreds of years, a secret lay beneath its floors. Hiding under the grass, trees and soil sits the Great Pyramid of Cholula, deemed the largest monument ever built on Earth, with a base four times the size of the Great Pyramid of Giza.
NYT – In a country that is struggling with pressing social, economic and political challenges yet possesses a rich cultural heritage, many emerging artists and trendsetters no longer feel compelled to look abroad for inspiration.
RT – A spectacular, ancient document housed in the Bodleian Libraries at Oxford University since the 17th Century has finally been revealed – and the story it tells gives a dazzling insight into Mexican civilizations prior to the arrival of the conquistadores.
La Jornada – The National Sound Archive announced the creation of the Institute for the Preservation and Promotion of Bolero in Mexico, which will seek to have this genre registered by UNESCO among its list of world assets.
PRI – In the canyons of northern Mexico’s Sierra Madre Occidental reside some of the fastest runners in the world: the indigenous Tarahumara population, who call themselves the Raramuri.
This indigenous group excels in running competitions worldwide. But to the authorities, they’re becoming known for something else: Narco-traffickers have been exploiting them to smuggle drugs to the US. Between 2010 and 2015, the number of Raramuri arrested at the US-Mexico border doubled from 50 to 100 detainees.
Artnet News – North Americans who can’t make the trip to Rome now have an opportunity to visit Michelangelo’s renowned Sistine Chapel in Mexico City. A full-size replica of the 15th century church, best known for the iconic ceiling fresco painstakingly painted by the Renaissance great between 1508 and 1512, has opened in Plaza de la República (Republic Square).
Asia Times – South Korea is launching what it calls the “K-pop Academy” in Mexico. Mexicans will be learning what it takes to be a Korean pop star through this government-sponsored cultural course. Participants will be given language training apart from a month of advanced instruction in singing and dancing.
Inhabit – Japanese architect Toyo Ito and his team recently celebrated the grand opening of the Museo Internacional del Barroco in Puebla. With assistance from local architect Federico Bautista Alonso, Ito wrapped the museum in a smooth white facade that curves here and reaches upward there.
NYT – It is a simple sculpture: 64 concrete pyramids that stand in a perfect circle around two-and-a-half acres of rippling, black volcanic rock. Known as “Espacio Escultórico,” the sculpture was inaugurated in 1979 on the campus of the National Autonomous University of Mexico. It is considered one of the most important pieces of land art in Mexico. But the recent construction of a white eight-story building nearby has prompted a furious protest that pits the university’s needs against Mexico’s cultural heritage.
Design Boom – In the Mexican city of Puebla, acclaimed Japanese architect Toyo Ito has designed a museum dedicated to baroque art. The Museo Internacional del Barroco, or simply the MIB, occupies a prominent UNESCO world heritage site in the country’s fourth largest city.
BBC – “Machismo has to die,” chanted protesters as they walked through the centre of Mexico City last month. Thousands of people came out onto the streets to say enough was enough. The macho culture is all pervasive in Mexico and many of those at the march think its emphasis on male pride is a contributing factor in the high rates of violence against women that Mexico is experiencing.
NPR – A day after Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto proposed enshrining same-sex marriage in the traditionally conservative country’s constitution, Mexico’s Catholic Church said it opposes the move.
Archaeology – Live Science reports on the ongoing study of a 1,300-year-old carved and painted human mandible discovered in a ceremonial area at the Zapotec site of Dainzú-Macuilxó, located in southern Mexico. The jawbone is thought to have been worn as a pendant.
Informador – More than 25 years after the publication of “Like Water for Chocolate,” Laura Esquivel has decided to transform her successful novel into a trilogy. The second book will be “The Daily Tita.”
IB Times – As Americans prepare to sip margaritas and munch on chips and guacamole for Cinco de Mayo, the fifth of May, the holiday gets a different treatment in Mexico. Here’s a look at the history, misconceptions and interesting facts about a day that has become of celebration of Mexican cuisine and heritage.
Euro News – A new exhibition of photos and letters never before seen, belonging artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera are going on show in Mexico City. Their on-off stormy marriage was among the most prominent of the 20th century art world.The expo promises to reveal a more intimate side of their relationship.
Global Post – Tourists found dead. Video cameras filming under skirts. An attempt to take off a woman’s underwear mid-stride. And a “pandemic” of femicide — all in Mexico. For these reasons and many others, a group of women in Mexico organized a day of action against sexual violence.
Seeker – Artists in Mexico can participate in a unique program called Pago en Especie (Payment in Kind) where they are permitted to pay federal income tax with their own artwork. The program began in 1957 and has grown to include over 7,000 paintings, sculptures and graphic art in a public collection from well-known artists across Mexico.