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Museums in Mexico City seek government aid following swine flu

June 2, 2009 | 10:34 am


Our friends over at the La Plaza blog report today that attendance at Mexico City's museums has fallen by as much as 90% since the outbreak of the H1N1 virus last month, but they aren't going down without a fight.

A handful of privately owned art institutions are seeking government aid and are threatening staff cuts and more if business doesn't improve. Five of the city's non-government-owned museums, including the Frida Kahlo Museum and the Diego Rivera Anahuacalli Museum, are petitioning the government for help and accusing it of ignoring the cultural sector’s needs after the influenza shutdown, according to media reports.

“They don’t think of museums as part of the economy, or they regard them as subsidized entities that have other means of existing," said Alfonso Morales, head of the Soumaya museum, to the newspaper La Jornada.

Morales and Carlos Phillips, owner of the Dolores Olmedo Museum, are floating a proposal to create an association of non-governmental museums with the intention of reducing the taxes that they are required to pay.

Read more about the development here.

-- David Ng

Photo: A street view of Mexico City. Credit: Associated Press