In 1929 the young architect Luis Barragan is commissioned to make a house on the outskirts of Guadalajara to a prominent member of the local society, Efraín González Luna, ideologue, politician and intellectual who together with his family lived there until the date of his death in 1964. The project presented by Barragán responding to the characteristics that would accompany him in his work, a mixture of architecture and art, where the use of light and indoors play with color, intimacy and materials typical of the region, emphasized by a time in which was praised and defended the native Mexico, the called “regionalism”. His atypical composition within the environment of the “Guadalajara Colony” and its peculiar construction has made it an architectural landmark of the twentieth century.
In 2001, the Institute of Technology and Higher Studies (ITESO) acquires and restores the house, establishing its headquarters in the place with the intention of preserving Barragán construction. It has been declared Artistic Monument by the Ministry of Public Education Mexico, in addition to receiving recognition by the National Institute of Fine Arts and the Culture of Jalisco as a Property of Significant Artistic Value. From that moment the house renamed ITESO Clavigero House in honor of the jesuit Francis Xavier Clavigero, scholar of modern philosophy and work with the Indians.
Between 1920-1940 Mexico crossed an architectural time trying to get away from the Europeanized building models, mainly French, to regain the local models. This movement known as “regionalism” is manifested with Arabic influences blended with indigenous and Persians forms, it was no more than a fleeting movement that barely lasted 20 years, until Le Corbusier revolutionized the world with his new concept of architecture.
To build the solid González Luna House, Barragán resorted to using local materials, walls of adobe, stone, mosaic floors and dark wood, lime paints and “perón brick” widely used in the exterior for its hardness. Barragán plays with light, space, wind and water elements that characterize all his architectural work.
The walls were painted in neutral colors, reserving the use of colors to the details, like the tops of walls, railings or benches. The roof was covered with tiles, the doors were made in dark, solid wood the main entrance with metal wall panels and translucent stripes and which goes to the backyard. The pergola on the upper deck was constructed with profiled wood slats rest on masonry columns.
The floors were covered with different types of ceramics, decorated sometimes, one color indoors.
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