The bicentennial torch, designed by José Pareja Gómez and Jesús Hernández Martínez, is inspired by the mural depicting the social struggle of Mexican independence by Jose Clemente Orozco in which the leader of the independence, Don Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, leading the insurrection by tightly grasping a flaming torch. The structure manifested from this image by the architect is a 45-meter tall element emphasizing the main entrance into León, Guanajuato, México.The monument consists of a 10-meter tall concrete volume, followed by a 35-meter steel structure made of one hundred rings, which is interspersed with one hundred voids and marked by two hundred scars. The shadow that will be projected on them will produce optical negatives. At night, the sculpture will be a great urban lamp, illuminating the environment through its presence and enlightening the city of its symbol. The scars mark the journey to independence.A light path is drawn from the bottom of the monument to the top, linking land, object and sky in producing a perpetual flame that stands for Mexican Independence and the country’s future projected to infinity.
The bicentennial torch is a tribute to the heroes who fought for independence and granted the people a homeland, illuminating the ideals of freedom and sovereignty. The torch begins at a base made of mud, stones and undergrowth and proceeds in a trajectory of man-made materials through toil and effort, making its way to the sky in an unending projection of the Mexican people’s desire for unity.
Architect: José Pareja Gómez / Jesús Hernández Martínez
Location: León, Guanajuato, México.
Name of the project: “Antorcha Bicentenario” (“bicentennial torch”)
Architectonic and lightning design: José Pareja Gómez / Jesús Hernández Martínez / Abdiel Miranda Rodríguez / Isaí Padilla Aguirre / Eduardo Muñoz de la Torre / Claudia Pérez Campos
Landscape Design: José Pareja Gómez / Jesús Hernández Martínez
Project Leaders: Jesús Hernández Martínez / José Pareja Gómez
Project Team: Abdiel Miranda Rodríguez / Gilberto Isaí Padilla Aguirre / Eduardo Muñoz de la Torre / Claudia Pérez Campos
Structural project: Jorge Lucio Lerma Carmona
Project year: 2010