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Juan O’Gorman

Juan O'Gorman (1905 - 1982) was one of Mexico City's most prominent 20th-century painters and architects. Born in Coyoacán, he was the son of an Irish painter named Cecil Crawford O'Gorman and Encarnación O'Gorman Moreno. He began his studies in architecture at the Academia de San Carlos and later at the UNAM Faculty of Architecture.

He's primarily remembered as one of the greats of 20th-century Functionalism although only a few of his architectural projects remain.  Throughout his career, he was a professor at the National Polytechnic Institute, where he created an undergraduate program in "architectural engineering."

He designed and built no fewer than 26 elementary schools in the City. He's well remembered for the House-Studio buildings he built for Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo in 1931-1932. (See below.)

But the Central Library of the National University (UNAM) is easily his most celebrated and representative work. While some of his other paintings and murals can be seen around the city, these are the most frequently cited, examined, and analyzed. They may be among the most discussed and viewed visual works in the country.

Juan O'Gorman died in 1982, but his work has almost never stopped being discussed. The listings below are those most strongly associated with O'Gorman's life and work. Clicking on any of them will also show you the nearby sites and attractions.

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