By Beryl Foreman
In 2003, Rashad Marx, who was just 19, opened The Source, a boutique in Tijuana dedicated to independent design and graffiti art. He sourced most of the clothing from north of the border by connecting with designers in LA, San Francisco, New York, and San Diego. The Source thrived for a little over five years before it finally fell victim to Tijuana’s economic decline, which came as an aftermath to 9-11,the Mexican drug war and American border policies.
From the 1920’s to the early part of the 21st Century, Tijuana was a constant mecca for tourists. Its downtown entertainment corridor, Avenida Revolución, was thronged by Americans seeking a vaguely exotic, cheap foreign excursion. Tijuanans tended to steer clear of the crowds and the escalated prices in the main ‘tourist’ drag, even though there were many young people who would probably have enjoyed mingling with the wild, drunk Americans. Once tourism plummeted, downtown businesses began catering to the desires of Tijuana’s young and artsy locals. The city began its slow renaissance led by business entrepreneurs, cultural organizations, and artists.