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Art Deco Theater Print – Streets of Mérida Mexico


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I have a real soft spot for Art Deco Theaters. There is simply something in my mind which ties the golden age of movies with that particular architectural style. And it’s the era when going to the movies was an event and the theaters were ornate palaces for the people.

So often these days when you encounter an old art deco theater, it is in a sad state of repair if not outright abandoned. I am sure at one point there must have been so many of these that it seemed needless to save them. Now it feels like these old theaters must be an endangered species and I’m always thrilled to find one in a brilliant condition like this old grand dame on the streets of Mérida in the Yucatán, state of Mexico.

I was staying on the same street as the Teatro Mérida on my first trip there and passed it virtually every day. When I saw the beautiful neon lights on that old Art Deco Theater, I was determined to get a good picture of it before I left. In a week, you would think that was no big order but night after night, one thing or another came up. Either the lights weren’t on, for instance, or a large bus or truck was parked out front when they were. It became almost laughable that I was going to leave without that coveted picture!

This dusk scene of the neon lights on that beautiful art deco theater is from my last night in Mérida. Yes, that’s how close I cut it. On my last night as I headed to the zócalo, I spotted the neon lights against the deep dusk blue sky and I sped up my pace! And as you can see from this print, it was worth waiting for – what a beautiful sight!

The Teatro Mérida was originally opened in 1949 and closed as a movie theater in 1992. The Yucatan state took on the state of renovating the old art deco theater and re-opened it as an arts complex in 2000. By the time I re-visited Mérida, the old theater had been re-named the Teatro Armando Manzanero in honor of a very successful musical composer of Maya descent from the Yucatán. So, my print from that prior trip with the original name already has a bit of a vintage quality to it for those who have also walked the streets of Mérida!

Of course the lovely thing about this art deco theater print is that you can love the classic movie theater style and those great neon lights whether or not you have seen it in person! I know this print would appeal to me even if I had never had the pleasure of a beautiful night in the Yucatán.

I would love to hear what you personally find most striking about this theater print?


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