Rafael Viñoly is the principal of the internationally recognized firm of Rafael Viñoly Architects, which he established in 1983, with practices in New York, Tokyo and Buenos Aires. Mr. Viñoly was born in Montevideo, Uruguay. The son of the artistic director of the Sodre Opera Theatre and a noted film maker, Viñoly spent his early years in Uruguay and Argentina, where he moved with his family at the age of five. Surrounded by music as a child and a serious student of the piano, Viñoly developed a professional career as a concert artist before turning his attention to architecture.
After completing his studies in architecture at the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism of the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina, Viñoly, with six associates, formed the Estudio de Arquitectura. This firm ultimately became one of the largest architectural practices in South America. He earned a Masters Degree at the University of Buenos Aires and then joined its faculty, teaching architectural theory in the graduate architecture program. In 1974, a military coup resulted in a major reorganization of the University and Viñoly left to help found the alternative architecture school, which operated independently during the occupation.
Viñoly came to the United States in 1978, first as a guest lecturer at Washington University and then at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design. He settled permanently in New York in 1979, setting up an independent practice, providing a wide array of architectural, interior design and urban planning services.
Recent awards include an Excellence in Design Award 1994 by the New York State Association of Architects for the Lehman College Physical Education Facility; a Bard Award from the City Club of New York and the first prize in the national design competition for the Snug Harbor Music Hall, Staten Island.
Ground Zero: The Design Competition
as author at MIT World Series - The Arthur H. Schein Memorial Lecture and Exhibition Series,