Below are 91 pieces from the Museum of Contemporary Art-Plaza in La Paz, Bolivia, and above is Pueblo de las Alturas by noted Aymaran painter Mamani Mamani. If you’re looking for the planet’s largest online collection of works from this museum, you’ve come to the right place.
Situated in a restored 19th-century mansion on the Avenida 16 de Julio, or Prado, it’s worth visiting just to experience the building –according to Lonely Planet, the house is just one of four originals that remain on the Bolivian administrative capital’s main thoroughfare. Its stained glass panels and glass roof were designed by Gustave Eiffel.
The collection, spread out over two floors, is an eclectic mix of mostly contemporary work, primarily by Bolivian artists, and extensive enough to offer a good starting point and even some valuable insight into the country’s art scene of the 20th and 21st centuries.
The collection is strongest in reflecting and conveying the recent experience of the country’s indigenous population as it continues to be redefined by subsequent waves of post-colonial and contemporary history. That’s a common theme throughout much of the world, whose interpretations are only limited by the number of artists choosing to share those stories. Some of those told here are utterly fascinating.
It could do with a few less portraits of Che –and weeding out some of the pieces heavy on political dogma—but those cons are balanced nicely with the temporary exhibits occasionally offered. Like this one, The Power of Silence, by Vidal Cussi.
Entry is Bs 15 (2.17 USD / 1.96 EUR); if you want to take upwards of 100 photos, it’ll cost an additional Bs 20. There is a nice gift shop with additional works on display and for sale. With works available for as little as 30 USD, there really isn’t a good reason not to take an original art work or two home with you.
Museo de Arte Contemporaneo-Plaza (Plaza Museum of Contemporary Art)
Avenida 16 de Julio 1698
Mon – Sun 9am to 9pm
A few notes about the images below, all taken in April 2013:
These were all taken handheld with no flash at a very high ISO. When post-processing, I tried to remain as true to the actual colors as memory allowed. My apologies to the artists if anything is unfairly represented.
To help with load speed and to lend some organization to the presentation, the works are divided into eight groups. The slide show speed is set at six seconds. If that’s too fast, just hover over the center of the image and click the pause icon. Too slow? Click the right arrow.
And for those of you in the U.S., I’m obligated to tell you that a few probably are NSFW.
Enjoy and do share!
Group 1: works by Adda Donato, Alberto Medina, Alejandra Lima, David Sea and Eddy Ortega
Group 2: works by Eusebio Choque, Fernando Antezana and Freddy Escobar
Group 3: works by Froilan Cosme, German Plaza, Giomar Mesa, Grupo Plaza, Gustavo Apaza, Gustavo Ayala and Haldor Paulsson
Group 4: works by Hans Hoffmann, Jaime Callisaya and Javier Fernandez
Emigracion Campesina – Triptych by Jose Rodriguez
Group 5: works by Jorge Arias Saavedra, Jose Soriano, Judith Ordonez, Luis Hinojoso Montellano, Mamani Mamani, Marco Antonio Mantano, Marco Kondori and Maria la Placa
Group 6: works by Mario Conde, Olga Garcia, Paul Rienzo and Pedro Almanza
Group 7: works by Ramiro Machaca, Renato Estrada and Renzo Ricardo
Group 8: works by Rosmery Mamani, Silvia Penaloza, Sofia Chipana, Sony, Vidal Cussi and Zenon Sansuste
The top floor features an elegant walkway with a small selection of sculptures; a few shots below.
And finally, here’s me, taking a break in front of the top floor stairway’s mirror.