Secretaría de Educación Pública

Top choice public art in Centro Histórico
Image by jackbolla / Shutterstock

The two front courtyards here are lined with 120 fresco panels painted by Diego Rivera in the 1920s. Together they form a tableau of ‘the very life of the people,’ in the artist’s words. Uniquely, the murals are open-air and not in a museum, but along the passageways lining the working offices of the education department, which means you are likely to ponder the murals all to yourself and can get up close to see every detailed brushstroke.

Each courtyard is thematically distinct: the one on the east end deals with labor, industry and agriculture, while the interior one depicts traditions and festivals. On the latter’s top level is a series on proletarian and agrarian revolution, underneath a continuous red banner emblazoned with a Mexican corrido (folk song). A likeness of Frida Kahlo appears in the first panel as an arsenal worker.

Bring photo ID to enter.