Tuesday, April 07, 2009

More highlights from Mexico - Guanajuato

One of the highlights of my trip last month was a visit to Guanajuato, the capital city of the state of Guanajuato in Mexico. This city is built on a mountain side, has working silver mines, and is accessed through a labyrinth of tunnels that run underneath the city - mostly one way tunnels mind you!

I looked on the internet for artist's interpretations of the city and see a Craigorio Hauquitz mentioned on many websites. This artist is apparently a German-Slovakian Mexican sculptor/painter. I was very curious to see his work. Nowhere however, could I find an image.

We did visit one mine, a part of which is pictured below. We didn't go inside since it's a working mine, but enjoyed the view of the grounds and panaorama of the city. There were vendors outside the mine selling scrap material, including lots of large crystals and jewelry made from the "scrap".

Guanajuato is also the home of a very unusual mueum - the Museo de Momias. This museum houses the dearly departed exhuned after their families are unable to pay a grave tax on their funeral plot. Some combination of dryness and minerals in the ground has naturally mummified them and now they are on display.

This seems to be something that people will go to see once. It wasn't too terribly gory - there was a school field trip going through shortly after we arrived, although it bothered me that some of the mummies were not that old, but had been buried in the 50's. This seems to change it from something that might be considered historical and scientific to something more creepy or disrespectful. I don't know why - just a feeling that elapsed time creates a boundary of it's own.

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