Mexico City is a place of stunning contrasts. Steel and glass skyscrapers happily neighbor century-old buildings that proudly contrast their ancient, seemingly chaotic surfaces with the cleanliness and sterility of the modern.

Unlike my home in the U.S., Orange County, which many people have described to me as “uniformly beige,” Mexico is immersed in color. Color is everywhere. Where you would expect it in everything from flower shops to folk costumes to a plate of food. But also where you wouldn’t expect it: for instance, religious iconography is often wrapped in a riot of color in the form of delightful retablos.