Possible commission from a Viceroy of New Spain; Roberto Mergelina, first half of the 18th century, Cadiz, Spain; Eduarda Gil de Ledesma, mid-18th century, Cadiz, Spain; By direct descent, the Counts of Bustillo, Seville, Spain; Rodrigo Rivero Lake, Mexico City.
This extraordinary screen is made up of wooden panels mounted onto supporting frames, where the crowns of carved gilt wood are separate from the main body. The panels are covered using the Asian “makie” technique, lacquer with a brilliant burnt red color, on top of which a border frieze is applied in a design undeniably originating from Pátzcuaro, serving as a sort of frame. Inside these, we observe two major groups, with cutaways and various perspectives of the streets of Mexico City from the early 18th century. Finally, we find a range of depictions, from the mountains and volcanoes of the valley, and the neighboring villages that now form part of the growing City. The monuments and cutaways of the streets are architecturally well executed, and we can identify buildings and monuments that still exist today, along with others that have sadly not survived the passing of the years.