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Post-Modern Baroque, The New "Paper" Museum Of Puebla

International Museum of the Baroque
International Museum of the Baroque
Paula Baldo

PUEBLA — Mexico's recently opened International Museum of the Baroque, in this historic colonial city, is as much a work of art as the numerous 17th- and 18th-century pieces it contains.

Designed for Puebla by Japanese architect Toyo Ito, the structure — with its 53 white walls, all a little different from each other, and many appearing to fold as they support the edifice — doesn't just house Baroque artwork; it seeks to "be" Baroque.

The rooms are open-ended, creating a continuous space that prompts visitors to flow from one display room to another. The natural light that bathes the premises echoes the Baroque period's use of light on statues or spaces to evoke Divine presence.

The building has two floors and does not exceed 20 meters in height. The ground floor contains the collection on display. The first floor is kept for workshops, activities and administration.

A yawning entry hall with its curved staircase provides a display space for benches designed by the Kazuko Fujie workshop and made in part by Puebla textile craftspeople. From there visitors are led to a large interior courtyard, with a shallow pool of swirling, shimmering water that represents, like the museum, the restlessness and exuberance of Baroque's tumultuous age.

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food / travel

When Racism Poisons Italy's Culinary Scene

This is the case of chef Mareme Cisse, a black woman, who was called a slur after a couple found out that she was the one who would be preparing their meal.

Photo of Mareme Cisse cooking

Mareme Cisse in the kitchen of Ginger People&Food

Caterina Suffici


TURIN — Guess who's not coming to dinner. It seems like a scene from the American Deep South during the decades of segregation. But this happened in Italy, in this summer of 2023.

Two Italians, in their sixties, got up from the restaurant table and left (without saying goodbye, as the owner points out), when they declared that they didn't want to eat in a restaurant where the chef was what they called: an 'n-word.'

Racists, poor things. And ignorant, in the sense of not knowing basic facts. They don't realize that we are all made of mixtures, come from different racial and ethnic backgrounds. And that food, of course, are blends of different ingredients and recipes.

The restaurant is called Ginger People&Food, and these visitors from out of town probably didn't understand that either.

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