Cristo House, Guadalajara, 1929. Facade on Calle Moreno.

The project to design a house for Gustavo Cristo, head of the Guadalajara City Council in the late 1920s, is commonly dated to 1929. This residence marks a milestone in the evolution of Barragán’s design language, heralding a decisive shift in the treatment of outdoor spaces.

1612 Calle Pedro Moreno, Colonia Americana, Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
1929
Villa
Cristo House, Guadalajara, 1929. Ground floor plan as published in the Architectural Record, September 1931.

The archival documents referring to the project are scarce, consisting of a few undated period photographs. However, a schematic plan published in the September 1931 issue of the Architectural Record shows the original layout. In its current state, the house has undergone a number of interventions that have slightly altered its spatial configuration and interior details, while changes in the surrounding urban environment have affected the original setting and outdoor areas.

The building occupies a rectangular corner lot with its front facade overlooking Calle Pedro Moreno, a street that was under rapid development at the time, due to the expansion of Guadalajara’s residential sector. Resting on a platform, the house is elevated from the street and surrounded by a paved terrace. A few steps lead to the entrance loggia, whose elliptical arches – along with other decorative details – reveal the influence of a Moorish-style architecture that permeates the design of the entire residence.

The loggia shelters the main entrance, serving as a welcoming transitional space. A small vestibule connects to a double-height living room, which contains a projecting, open staircase. Set against the front wall, the stairs access a self-contained suite on the upper level. A lunette window allows natural light to permeate the space below. At the top of the opposite wall, a triple arched window provides further illumination.

On its north side, the living room gives way to the dining room, a pantry and the kitchen. Two bedrooms joined by a shared bathroom are positioned to the east of the living room. Towards the rear, set slightly apart from the main living spaces, is a study. Its pitched roof stands out from the cubic volumes comprising the main body of the house.

The flat roofs of the Cristo House compose a system of interconnected terraces, similar to the previous designs of the Aguilar House and the González Luna House. However, the rooftop of the Cristo House features a novelty. The tendedero, a walled area used to dry clothes, is configured here as a pure, almost abstract geometric form, a void enclosed by walls. It is raised by a few steps and accessed through an arched opening. The motif of the open-air room, introduced here for the first time, became a prominent compositional element in Barragán’s architecture.

Cristo House, Guadalajara, 1929. Semi-enclosed spaces on the rear patio.

A variation of the same theme appears in the rear patio and service court on the ground floor. The layout of the Cristo House is Barragán’s first attempt to implement an inward-looking scheme, one that incorporates the garden space rather than confining it to the margins of the plot. The area at the back of the site is thus treated like a continuation of the interior, as a succession of open-air rooms extending the sequence of the internal spaces. Three walled courtyards are articulated by masonry partitions, one of which is pierced by an elliptical arch. Two blind arches of the same type adorn the street side of the perimeter wall. Both the partition and perimeter walls have a rough stucco finish that contrasts with the glazed tiles used for the coping.

Cristo House, Guadalajara, 1929. Lunette windows on the roof–terrace terrace.

The same coarse textures characterize the front facade, where an array of decorative features such as crenellations and elaborate balustrades, along with the vivid colour accents of the openings and passageways, reveal the persistent influence of Ferdinand Bac’s evocative iconography. Such exuberance, however, is mainly found in the formal areas of the residence. It was in the design of the secondary, functional spaces, at the rear of the plot and at roof-top level, that Barragán freely experimented with a more abstract, innovative approach, complemented by locally sourced materials and vernacular accents.

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1927
Houses for Adolfo Robles Castillo
Semi-detached residences
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
1927, 1936
Robles León House
Townhouse; renovation, extension, interior design
Collaborating architect in the 1936 intervention: Ignacio Díaz Morales
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
Late 1920s
House in Calle Liceo
Townhouse
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
Late 1920s
House in Calle Pedro Loza
Townhouse
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
Late 1920s
Houses in Calle Zaragoza
Townhouses
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
1928
Aguilar House
Villa
Demolished
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
ca. 1928
González Luna House
Villa
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
ca. 1928
Houses for Emiliano Robles León in Avenida de la Paz
Semi-detached residences
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
Late 1920s
Houses for Ildefonso Franco
Semi-detached residences
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
1929
Cristo House
Villa
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
Early 1930s
Cristo House in Chapala
Townhouse; renovation
Chapala, State of Jalisco
Early 1930s
Barragán House in Chapala
Townhouse; renovation
Chapala, State of Jalisco
1934
Newton House
Villa
Realization unknown
Chapala, State of Jalisco
1934
Carmen Orozco House
Villa; renovation
Collaborating engineer: Juan Palomar y Arias
Demolished
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
ca. 1934
House in Calle Rayón
Townhouse
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
ca. 1934
Harper de Garibi House
Townhouse
Collaborating engineer: Ramón Hermosillo
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
1934
House for Emiliano Robles León in Calle Marcos Castellanos
Townhouse
Collaborating engineer: Ramón Hermosillo
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
1934
House for Efraín González Luna in Calle Marcos Castellanos
Townhouse
Collaborating engineer: Ramón Hermosillo
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
1934–1935
Parque de la Revolución
Landscape design
In collaboration with Juan José Barragán
Partially demolished
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
1934–1935
Cine Jalisco
Cinema
In collaboration with Juan José Barragán
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
1935
Houses for José T. Sauza
Study
Realization unknown
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
1936
Barragán Apartment
Interior design
Mexico City
ca. 1936
Houses in Avenida Mazatlán
Townhouses
Mexico City
1936
Houses in Avenida Parque México
Semi-detached residences
Mexico City
1936
House in Calle Guadiana
Townhouse
Mexico City
1936
House in Avenida Tamaulipas
Townhouse
Demolished
Mexico City
1936–1937, 1940
Pizarro Suárez House
Villa
Mexico City
1937–1940
Amatitán Parish Church
Religious; renovation, extension
In collaboration with Ignacio Díaz Morales
Amatitán, State of Jalisco
ca. 1937
Villaseñor House
Villa
Collaborating architect: Antonio Ramos Salido
Demolished
Mexico City
1939–1940; mid 1940s
González Gallo House
Villa; extension
Collaborating engineer: José Creixell
Mexico City
Late 1930s
Apartment Building in Calles Lerma and Guadiana
Mixed-use
Demolished
Mexico City
ca. 1939
Two Apartment Buildings in Calle Elba
Mixed-use
Partially demolished
Mexico City
ca. 1939
Apartment Building for Raoul Sánchez and Margarita J. de Sánchez
Mixed-use
Collaborating engineer: José Creixell
Mexico City
1939
Apartment Building for María de la Parra de Verduzco
Mixed-use
Collaborating engineer: José Creixell
Mexico City
1939–1940
Apartment Building and Two Houses for Arturo Figueroa Uriza
Mixed-use and townhouses
Collaborating engineer: José Creixell
Mexico City
1939–1940
Apartment Building for Lorenzo Garza
Mixed-use
Collaborating engineer: José Creixell
Mexico City
1939–1940
Studio-Apartment Building
Residential
Collaborating architect: Max Cetto; collaborating engineer: José Creixell
Mexico City
1939–1941
José Clemente Orozco House
Townhouse; consultancy
Mexico City
Late 1930s
House in Avenida Nuevo León
Townhouse
Mexico City
1940
Apartment Building for Concepción Ribot
Mixed-use
Collaborating engineer: José Creixell
Demolished
Mexico City
1940
Apartment Building and House for Alfonso Barragán
Residential and Townhouse
Collaborating engineer: José Creixell
The house is demolished
Mexico City
ca. 1940
Chávez Peón de Ochoa House
Townhouse
Collaborating engineer: José Creixell
Mexico City
1940
Apartment Building for Carmen García Rulfo de Cristo
Mixed-use
Collaborating engineer: José Creixell
Mexico City
1940–1941
Apartment Building for José Mojica
Mixed-use
Collaborating architect: Antonio Ramos Salido; collaborating engineer: José Creixell
Mexico City
ca. 1940
Apartment Building at 14 Parque Melchor Ocampo
Mixed-use
Collaborating engineer: José Creixell
Mexico City
1940–1941
El Arenal Parish Church
Religious; renovation
In collaboration with Ignacio Díaz Morales
El Arenal, State of Jalisco
Early 1940s
González Gallo House in Cuernavaca
Villa; extension
Cuernavaca, State of Morelos
1940–1941
Terrenos Madereros
Subdivision
Mexico City
1941–1943
Barragán House and Gardens at 20 Calle Francisco Ramírez
Townhouse; renovation, extension, landscape design
Also known as Ortega House
Mexico City
Mid 1940s
Bermúdez Garden
Landscape design
In collaboration with Xavier Guerrero
Realization unknown
1943–1945
Gardens in Avenida San Jerónimo
Landscape design
Demolished
Mexico City
1945–1952
Jardines del Pedregal
Urban development
Collaborating urban planner: Carlos Contreras Elizondo
Mexico City
Late 1940s, mid 1950s
Houses for Rafael Michel
Townhouses; renovation
Realization unknown
Mexico City
Late 1940s
House at 27 Calle Francisco Ramírez
Townhouse
Mexico City
Late 1940s
House for Alfredo Ortega Rojas
Townhouse
Unbuilt
Mexico City
1948
Barragán House
Townhouse
Mexico City
1948–1951
Prieto López House
Villa
Mexico City
1949–1950
Houses at 10 and 12 Avenida de las Fuentes
Villas
In collaboration with Max Cetto
Partially demolished
Mexico City
1953–1955, 1966
Majahua
Subdivision, holiday house
Manzanillo, State of Colima
1953
El Zócalo
Urban design
Partially realized
Mexico City
1953
Pedestrian Underpasses
Urban design
Unbuilt
Mexico City
Mid 1950s
Avenida Florencia and Avenida Sevilla
Urban design
Unbuilt
Mexico City
1954
Parque Azteca
Landscape design
Unbuilt
Mexico City
1954–1963
Capuchin Convent Chapel
Religious; extension, renovation
Mexico City
1955
Gálvez House
Villa
Mexico City
1955
Hotel Pierre Marqués Gardens
Landscape design
Acapulco, State of Guerrero
Mid 1950s
Punta Diamante
Subdivision
Unbuilt
Acapulco, State of Guerrero
Mid 1950s
Calle Pedrera
Subdivision
Realization unknown
Acapulco, State of Guerrero
1955–1958
Jardines del Bosque
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
Mid 1950s
Roundabout and Fountain in Parque de la Revolución
Urban design
Unbuilt
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
Mid 1950s
Linda Vista
Subdivision, villa
Realization unknown
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
1956
Apartment in Calle Guadiana
Renovation
Realization unknown
Mexico City
1956
Plaza del Cigarro
Urban design
Mexico City
1957
Torres de Satélite
Urban design
In collaboration with Mathias Goeritz
Naucalpan de Juárez, State of Mexico
Late 1950s
Club in Ciudad Satélite
Sports complex
Unbuilt
Naucalpan de Juárez, State of Mexico
Late 1950s
Apartment Buildings in Ciudad Satélite
Mixed-use
Unbuilt
Naucalpan de Juárez, State of Mexico
1957–1962
Las Arboledas
Urban development
Collaborating engineer: Pablo González López
Atizapán de Zaragoza, State of Mexico
Late 1950s
La Cañada
Subdivision
Collaborating engineer: Pablo González López; collaborating architect: Leopoldo I. Maldonado
Unbuilt
Mexico City
Late 1950s–early 1960s
Olas Altas
Subdivision
Unbuilt
Manzanillo, State of Colima
Late 1950s–mid 1960s
Santiago Yacht and Country Club
Tourism development
Realization unknown
Manzanillo, State of Colima
Late 1950s
Calvario Chapel
Religious
Construction differs from Barragán’s design
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
ca. 1960
Santa Cruz Sanctuary
Religious; extension
Collaborating architect: Javier Guido Dorantes
Unbuilt
Mexico City
ca. 1960
Senderos House
Villa
Unbuilt
Cuernavaca, State of Morelos
1960
Mexico City Expansion
Study
Valley of Mexico, State of Mexico
Early 1960s–mid 1960s
Apartment Building at 17 Calle Francisco Ramírez
Residential
Unbuilt
Mexico City
Early 1960s–mid 1960s
Punta Bruja
Subdivision, residential
Realization unknown
Acapulco, State of Guerrero
1961–1962, 1966–1967
Club Hípico Francés
Equestrian complex
Partially realized
Atizapán de Zaragoza, State of Mexico
Early 1960s
Cross-Country Racecourse
Landscape design
Atizapán de Zaragoza, State of Mexico
1961–1966
Los Clubes
Residential development
Atizapán de Zaragoza, State of Mexico
Early 1960s
Plaza de las Atarjeas
Landscape design
Realization unknown
1962
Suinaga de Siles House
Villa
Unbuilt
Mexico City
Early 1960s
Lundahl House
Villa; extension
Realization unknown
Mexico City
1962
San Mateo Tecoloapan Parish Church
Religious; renovation, extension
Unbuilt
Atizapán de Zaragoza, State of Mexico
1963
Subdivision in Chapala
Study
Realization unknown
Chapala, State of Jalisco
Mid 1960s
Condominio Horizontal
Semi-detached residences
Unbuilt
Atizapán de Zaragoza, State of Mexico
Mid 1960s
Villa Olímpica
Residential complex
Collaborating architect: Andrés Casillas
Unbuilt
Mexico City
1964–1967
Lomas Verdes
Urban development
In collaboration with Juan Sordo Madaleno; collaborating architect: José Adolfo Wiechers
Partially realized
Naucalpan de Juárez, State of Mexico
1965–1966
Salk Institute Courtyard
Landscape design; consultancy
Barragán’s input is incorporated in Kahn’s final design of the Salk Institute
La Jolla, State of California, USA
1965–1966
Cobre de México
Landscape design
Developed in connection with the housing complex by architect Juan Sordo Madaleno
Mexico City
1965–1967
La Alteña
Residential development
In collaboration with Juan Sordo Madaleno, collaborating architect: Andrés Casillas
Naucalpan de Juárez, State of Mexico
1965–1968, 1971–1972
La Alteña Chapel
Religious
First phase developed in collaboration with Juan Sordo Madaleno
Naucalpan de Juárez, State of Mexico
1966–1968
Cuadra San Cristóbal
Villa, equestrian complex, landscape design
In collaboration with Andrés Casillas
Atizapán de Zaragoza, State of Mexico
1966, 1970–1971
Covarrubias House
Villa; extension; subdivision
Mexico City
1967
Chicago Historical Society
Consultancy
Chicago, State of Illinois, USA
1968, 1972
Los Puentes
Subdivision
Unbuilt
Tepotzotlán, State of Mexico
1968
Cross-Shaped Towers
Study
Realization unknown
1969–1971
Granjas de Tepotzotlán
Residential development
Unbuilt
Tepotzotlán, State of Mexico
1969
Barragán Gortázar House
Townhouse
Naucalpan de Juárez, State of Mexico
Late 1960s
Bugambilias
Equestrian complex
Realization unknown
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
Late 1960s
Bugambilias Chapel
Religious
Realization unknown
Guadalajara, State of Jalisco
Late 1960s–early 1970s
San Miguel
Residential development
Atizapán de Zaragoza, State of Mexico
Late 1960s
Granjas Margaritas
Subdivision
Realization unknown
Cuautitlán Izcalli, State of Mexico
1970
Zueta Moreno
Subdivision
Realization unknown
Mexico City
1971–1972
Edificio Símbolo
Mixed-use complex
Collaborating architect: Andrés Casillas
Unbuilt
Naucalpan de Juárez, State of Mexico
1971, 1975
Plaza Oval
Urban design, apartment buildings
Unbuilt
Ecatepec de Morelos, State of Mexico
1971
Calle Soledad
Subdivision
Realization unknown
Mexico City
1972
Fountain in Ciudad Satélite
Urban design
Realization unknown
Naucalpan de Juárez, State of Mexico
1972–1973
Fuente Roja
Urban design
In collaboration with Ricardo Legorreta
Unbuilt
Naucalpan de Juárez, State of Mexico
1972
El Morro
Residential development
Unbuilt
Tepotzotlán, State of Mexico
1972
Neighbourhood Entrance in Lomas Verdes
Urban design
Realization unknown
Naucalpan de Juárez, State of Mexico
1972–1974
El Palomar
Urban development
Collaborating architect: Raúl Ferrera
Unbuilt
Palomar, State of Jalisco
1974
García Robles House
Villa
In collaboration with Andrés Casillas
Unbuilt
Mexico City
1975–1977
Gilardi House
Townhouse
Mexico City
1975–1977
Bernal Molina House
Villa
Construction differs from Barragán’s design
Mexico City
1976
House at 12 Calle Francisco Ramírez
Renovation; study
Unbuilt
Mexico City
1976–1977
Serrano
Residential development, villa
Unbuilt
Edinburg, State of Texas, USA
1977
Suárez House
Villa
Project by Luis Barragán and Raúl Ferrera
Realization unknown
Mexico City
1977
Harris Bank
Interior design
Project by Luis Barragán and Raúl Ferrera
Mexico City
1978
Office for Bruno Newman
Interior design
Project by Luis Barragán and Raúl Ferrera
Realization unknown
Mexico City
1978
Centro Tane
Interior design
Realization unknown
Mexico City
1978
Torre de Fuego
Urban design
Project by Luis Barragán and Raúl Ferrera
Unbuilt
Monterrey, State of Nuevo León
1978–1980
Meyer House
Villa
Also known as Garate House
Mexico City
1979
Cecurfic
Mixed-use complex
Project by Luis Barragán and Raúl Ferrera
Unbuilt
Monterrey, State of Nuevo León
1979
Fundición Office Building
Mixed-use
Project by Luis Barragán and Raúl Ferrera
Unbuilt
Mexico City
1979
Silver Tower
Sculpture
Project by Luis Barragán and Raúl Ferrera
1979
El Remanso
Urban design
Project by Luis Barragán and Raúl Ferrera
Unbuilt
Monterrey, State of Nuevo León
1979
Muralla China
Apartment complex
Project by Luis Barragán and Raúl Ferrera
Unbuilt
Manzanillo, State of Colima
1979, 1982, 1984
Barragán + Ferrera office
Interior design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Mexico City
1979–1982
Casa del Pelícano
Villa
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Manzanillo, State of Colima
1979–1982
Visa
Corporate complex
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Monterrey, State of Nuevo León
1979–1980
Capuchin Convent Wing
Religious; extension
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Mexico City
1980
Doral Park Country Club
Mixed-use complex
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Doral, State of Florida, USA
1980–1982
Garza Laguera Penthouse
Interior design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Partially realized
Mexico City
1980–1981
Development in Cancún
Study
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Cancún, State of Quintana Roo
1981
Golf Club in Manzanillo
Sports complex
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Manzanillo, State of Colima
1981–1986
Valdés House
Villa
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Monterrey, State of Nuevo León
1981
Puerta de Oro
Urban design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Monterrey, State of Nuevo León
1981–1982
Placa Roja
Urban design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Monterrey, State of Nuevo León
1981–1982
Calvin Klein Stores
Retail; study
Project by Barragán + Ferrera; collaborating designers: Benjamin Baldwin and Jonathan Warwick
Unbuilt
1982–1983
Coppola House
Villa, mixed-use complex, landscape design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Rutherford, Napa Valley, State of California, USA
1982
Peña House
Subdivision, villa
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Santiago, State of Nuevo León
1982
Baldwin House
Villa
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Sarasota, Florida, USA
1982–1984
Faro del Comercio
Urban design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Monterrey, State of Nuevo León
1982
Montalbán House
Villa
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Los Angeles, State of California, USA
1983
Dance School
Educational
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Realization unknown
Location unknown
1983–1985
Barragán Retrospective
Exhibition design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Museo Rufino Tamayo, Mexico City
1984–1987
Los Palos Grandes
Villa; renovation
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Realization unknown
Caracas, Venezuela
1984–1985
Caballero House
Villa
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Gómez Palacio, State of Durango
1984–1987
Menil Guesthouse
Mixed-use residence
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Houston, State of Texas, USA
1984–1985
Sumner Peck
Urban design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Madera, State of California, USA
1984
Morrissey House
Villa
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Unbuilt
Southampton, State of New York, USA
1984–1986
Monterrey and Butaca Chairs
Furniture design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
1985–1986
Carver
Mixed-use complex
Project by Barragán + Ferrera; collaborating engineers: Morse Consulting Group
Unbuilt
Palm Desert, State of California, USA
1986
Chick’n Taco
Retail
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Realization unknown
Location unknown
1986–1987
Borja House
Villa
Project by Barragán + Ferrera; collaborating architect: Ángel Borja Navarrete
Realization unknown
Mexico City
1987
Toro de Bronce Fountain
Landscape design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera; sculpture by Juan Soriano
Villahermosa, State of Tabasco
1987
Gibert Penthouse
Interior design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Realization unknown
Mexico City
1987–1994
Bel-Air Divertimento
Landscape design
Project by Barragán + Ferrera
Completed posthumously by landscape architects Lawrence Reed Moline
Los Angeles, State of California, USA