SET AGAINST THE diverse Mexican topography of jungle, mountain, desert and seashore, noted architectural photographer Tim Street-Porter's new book, "Casa Mexicana," reveals the astounding variety and beauty of Mexican homes. More than 350 photographs offer a fresh look at the architecture and interior design of Mexico and reveal our debt to California's early Mexican heritage.
Wherever they are found, Mexican houses mirror their unique heritage of Indian and European cultures--Toltec, Maya, Spanish and French. Each chapter examines the country's diverse architecture through its past cultural heritage. The vernacular style of one-room trojes (wooden houses), haciendas and Colonial styles were brought by the Spanish. In the late 19th Century, neoclassical French mansions along the Paseo de la Reforma were designed by Maximilian. Contemporary Mexican architecture of Luis Barragan and his heirs is also splendidly documented.