Altepetl: The Second Aqueduct of Chapultepec and The Fountain of San Juan Moyotlán's Market

Competition: The Erased City, Museo Del Chopo, Mexico

AUTHOR: Percibald García 

COMPETITION: The Erased City

MUSEUM: Museo Del Chopo, UNAM, Mexico City

PRIZE: Honorable Mention

DESCRIPTION:

 

2021 marks the 500th anniversary of the fall of mexica empire city Mexico-Tenochtitlan, and birth of Mexico City. This event changed entirely the conception of the city and its relation with the territory and its people. The new administration tried to erase the ancient city by tearing it down, building on top of it and draining the water of its surrounding lake. By this last action they also destructed the symbolic core of the city, which needs water to exist. This happened because for the mexica-nahua culture, the route word water (atl) threads the concepts of city, territory, governance, food supply and provision of justice.

After this, the new city was divided in two, a rich and developed side that though the western capitalist conception of a city that kidnapped all resources and services for the privileged, while in the other side, surviving native people started a journey of resistance against social injustice and exploitation. One example of this was the creation of an aqueduct and a fountain for the native people that was struggling though a big epidemic disease that killed 40% of the population. This kind of actions of resistance were only possible though communitarian cooperation and represented a way to preserve the idea of a city that preserves water and other territory resources as part of the collective.

Though the years we have forgotten about this ancient concepts and actions of resistance, burying them as the modern thirsty city continues to soak the lake and destroy its environment.