Marius de Zayas at Casa Luis Barragán, Mexico City – organized by Estancia FEMSA




Mousse Magazine

In collaboration with Casa Luis Barragán and Colección Diéresis, Estancia FEMSA presents the exhibition of Marius de Zayas, which gathers some works of this eclectic artist from Veracruz, Mexico, who explored the world of literature, drawing, theater, cinema, art galleries, and patronage.

After presenting two experimental exhibitions—“Barragán Fetichista” and “Secretos”—, which forged profound relationships with Casa Luis Barragán and the legacy of its creator, Estancia FEMSA has developed a new project that seeks to emphasize the interest this Mexican architect had for art trends at the beginning of the twentieth century.

Marius de Zayas, in spite of being nowadays an almost unknown character, was relevant to the creation, outreach, and promotion of modern art in America and Europe at the beginning of the last century.

He was born in a wealthy family from Veracruz, at the end of the 19th century. His father, Rafael de Zayas Enríquez, was an outstanding man of letters and lawyer. Due to his connection with the journalist world, Marius developed an interest in drawing and literature.

His personal work includes drawings, cartoons, and books –such as How, When, and Why Modern Art Came to New York, a story based on his memoirs about the arrival of modern art in the United States, written on request of Alfred H. Barr Jr., founder of the Museum of Modern Art of New York; along with his father, he was in charge of multiple magazines and other publications, besides managing his own art galleries: Modern Gallery and De Zayas Gallery.

Marius de Zayas also brought to America the work of European artists such as Pablo Picasso—of whom he organized his first exhibition in the United States in 1911—, Georges Braque, Francis Picabia, André Derain, and Constantin Brancu?i, a great achievement at the time. He also presented the work of Mexican painters such as Diego Rivera.

The aforementioned exhibition is built on two axes. The first one rises up from 291, one of the pioneer art magazines in the American continent, founded and edited by Marius De Zayas, himself. The second one revolves around a series of drawings, charcoals, photographs and books created by Marius De Zayas, that offer a synthesis of his artistic activity.

For the exhibition design, Taller de Arquitectura Frida Escobedo reimagined at Casa Luis Barragán’s studio, the legendary The Little Galleries of the Photo-Secession—or The Little Galleries—, where Marius De Zayas and other important artists of that time exhibited many of their works. The exhibition curated by Antonio Saborit, Director of Museo Nacional de Antropología, creates a direct bond to the world of Luis Barragán, who was interested in the most outstanding avant-garde art movements of the twentieth century.

When visiting this exhibition, part of Estancia FEMSA – Casa Luis Barragán program, enthusiasts and experts will be able to explore Casa Luis Barragán, recognized as an UNESCO World Heritage Site back in 2014, and get to know the work of Marius de Zayas, a key character for Modern Art promotion in the United States and worldwide.