Architect at large: a new book surveys the career of Rafael de Cárdenas

Architect at large: a new book surveys the career of Rafael de Cárdenas

Rafael de Cárdenas was working as a fashion designer for Calvin Klein when, seduced by the architecture of the newly-opened Guggenheim Bilbao, he decided to retrain. He founded his multidisciplinary practice Architecture at Large in New York in 2006 and spent the following decade working on everything from architecture to consulting and brand development.

A new book surveys the architect’s career, chronicling over ten years of creative work, including Miami’s Wynwood Building, a gallery space for Demisch Danant, and pop-up interiors for Nike. The Patrick Li-designed tome paints a perfect picture of de Cárdenas’ geographical and aesthetic reach.

Four chapters are divided thematically examining projects by de Cárdenas in high resolution, including his bold interior designs and homes in Manhattan. The presentation of the images, with folding out spreads to maximise impact, communicates in two dimensions the impression of walking into a multi-dimensional de Cárdenas-designed environment, while essays by Felix Burrichter, of PIN-UP magazine, and John Miller, New York and Berlin-based artist, writer, and musician, uncover narratives and open up new ways of interpreting the work of de Cárdenas.

A version of this originally featured in the November 2017 issue of Wallpaper* (W*224)