When I came back to Mexico in July 2010 I realized this country was a photographer’s paradise. Not only it has breathtaking landscapes and beautiful beaches, but its cities, towns and people invite the photographer to pick up the camera and shoot away. One perfect example of this is calle Madero in downtown Mexico City.
Calle Madero — Past, present and future
Madero street is not the longest, widest or most embellished road in the city—Reforma Avenue easily takes many of those attributes. However, its historic importance goes beyond its looks. The Spanish conquistadores drew it among the first streets of the new city they built over the ruins of the Aztec capital.
Calle Madero (with its many names throughout history) was the road many important parades took toward the main plaza of Mexico. The Three-Guaranties Army that won the Independence war, Benito Juarez’s army that defeated the French-imposed emperor, Francisco I. Madero’s march that started the Mexican Revolution and many others have passed through this road. Its historic buildings have witnessed Mexico’s most important moments.
The street connects Bellas Artes, Juarez Avenue and Eje Central Avenue to the west with the acclaimed Zócalo, the main public space in Mexico, to the east. Today, calle Madero is a pedestrian street walked by thousands of people a day.On weekends, and at certain hours of the day, it’s so busy it resembles a river of people with mixed currents, urban controlled chaos at its greatest expression. New ice cream shops, cafés, restaurants, bars, jewelry plazas, clothing stores and taquerías have thrived alongside older businesses and hotels since the government made the correct decision of closing the street to motorized traffic.
These large crowds unequivocally attract all kinds of characters such as street performers, tourists, love seekers, exhibitionists, etc. Evenings and nights are specially a good time to take pictures. The cooler temperatures invite locals, tourists and adventure seekers alike for a stroll. The subtle light makes it perfect to capture all kinds of subjects.
A few months ago I took an urban walk at night on Madero street to test my new DSLR camera (the one that got stolen). These are a few of the shots I took. I want to share them with the world to show how magnificent and fun Mexico City can be. There’s always something for everybody. And for photographers, it is truly a paradise.