banner

Brooklyn Street Art

…loves you more every day.

Panteón and Watchavato “No Esto No Es Lo Que Fue” Opens In Mexico City

Posted on November 23, 2017

This week BSA is in Mexico City in collaboration with Urban Nation Museum of Urban Contemporary Art (UN) to see what is steering the scene on the street, meet artists, visit artist compounds, museums, galleries, and studios – and of course to capture the wild and dynamic Street Art and graffiti scene here. Where Mexico City goes in art and culture makes big waves elsewhere in Latin America, and its Street Art scene has been quickly evolving in the last decade. Join us as we investigate the character and players in this modern/traditional city of more than 21 million people.


Newly opened Panteón in the very historic part of Mexico City features pizza, live music, and a series of open spaces for public programs and well appointed galleries – all inside a 400 year old colonial Spanish-style building on the cities’ oldest street. Architecturally registered as part of the cultural heritage of the city and country, these spaces are being preserved in their original splendor, and Street Artists/graffiti artists/contemporary artists are being carefully selected to breath new life into them.

Watchavato. NO ESTO NO ES LO QUE FUE. Centro Cultural Panteón. Mexico City. November 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Intended as a cultural meeting place where exhibitions, panel discussions, artist talks, community participation, screen printing facilities, and even “happenings” around social issues can co-exist, you can feel a positive inclusive vibe here, and you can imagine a number of new partnerships blossoming at Panteón going forward.

Watchavato. NO ESTO NO ES LO QUE FUE. Centro Cultural Panteón. Mexico City. November 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Thursday night features a much anticipated opening by a Mexican Street Artist Watchavato, who many here point to as a pioneer in the local Street Art scene of the mid-late 1990s’s. Known for his stencils, his devoted fans, and his insightful sarcasm in sign-making messages, the Sinaloa-based artist has incorporated sideways critiques of drug traffickers (“narcos”), by playing with the image of Jesús Malverde, a folklore hero of his home state who sometimes known as an angel of the poor, or the “narco-saint”.

Visitors to the show will see again a reference to Malverde here at the show as well as what can only be described as pieces expressing Watchavato’s existential feelings about graffiti and Street Art culture two decades after he began.

Watchavato. NO ESTO NO ES LO QUE FUE. Centro Cultural Panteón. Mexico City. November 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The sharp wit is not lost on us, as we have crossed paths with many an old-skool graff writer or early phase Street Artist who laments what they see as a loss of edge, rebellion, or even the transgressive nature of the early scene. The entire room can be taken into account as one installation, rather than individual pieces. Most notable of course are the gravestones, the most literal announcement of the death of Street Art we’ve seen.

Mourn not, we say, the future is unwritten.

We were incredibly fortunate to receive a full tour of every space (and future space) in Panteón by two of the curators of these newly opened art galleries, Andrés Medina who also serves as Director of the space and Mariela Gómez and the quality of concept and research that has gone into exhibits since opening this spring is already remarkable. Our sincere thanks to them.

Here are some of the images of the new show, NO ESTO NO ES LO QUE FUE (NO THIS IS NOT WHAT WAS).

Watchavato. NO ESTO NO ES LO QUE FUE. Centro Cultural Panteón. Mexico City. November 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Watchavato. NO ESTO NO ES LO QUE FUE. Centro Cultural Panteón. Mexico City. November 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Watchavato. NO ESTO NO ES LO QUE FUE. Centro Cultural Panteón. Mexico City. November 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Watchavato. NO ESTO NO ES LO QUE FUE. Centro Cultural Panteón. Mexico City. November 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Watchavato. NO ESTO NO ES LO QUE FUE. Centro Cultural Panteón. Mexico City. November 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Watchavato. NO ESTO NO ES LO QUE FUE. Centro Cultural Panteón. Mexico City. November 2017. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Watchavato NO ESTO NO ES LO QUE FUE opens today at the Centro Cultural Panteón in Mexico City’s Centro Historico. Click HERE for more information.

Please follow and like us:

Related Posts