La Boca (the mouth) was originally the first Buenos Aires harbor. It was called that way in reference to theRiachuelo, which would empty into the Río de la Plata in the shape of a big mouth.
It used to be a place where many Italian immigrants, especially from Genoa, would settle down to build their houses on high sidewalks due to frequent floods.
Among these immigrant families, were the parents of painter Benito Quinquela Martín, who in spite of not being his biological parents, took care of him and raised him in La Boca surrounded by the smell of theRiachuelo, the colorful houses and the high sidewalks. Later on, young Quinquela would start his work as an artist by painting marvelous portraits of the harbor sceneries from his childhood.