Architect David Rockwell

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arch-david-rockwellLong before turning his attention to architecture, David Rockwell harbored a fascination with immersive environments. Growing up in Chicago, Illinois and Deal, New Jersey, and Guadalajara,  Mexico, Rockwell was a child of the theater – his mother worked as a vaudeville dancer and choreographer and cast him in community repertory productions.

Rockwell brought his passion for theater and an eye for the color and spectacle of Mexico to his architecture training at Syracuse University where he received a Bachelor of Architecture degree and to his studies at the Architectural Association in London. These formative influences continue to have a strong impact on his practice.

Rockwell Group
He founded Rockwell Group in 1984, an award winning, cross-disciplinary architecture and design practice, based in New York City with a satellite office in Madrid. The firm focuses on a diverse array of projects that range from hotels to hospitals, restaurants to airport terminals and Broadway set designs to consumer products. Rockwell’s monograph, Pleasure: The Architecture and Design of Rockwell Group, was published by Universe, a division of Rizzoli Books in 2002. Spectacle by David Rockwell with Bruce Mau – a book examining the history and public fascination with larger-than-life manmade events – was published by Phaidon Press in October 2006.

Career Growth
He was also honored with the 2009 Pratt Legends Award, the 2008 National Design Award by Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt for outstanding achievement in Interior Design, a lifetime achievement award from Interiors magazine, an induction in Interior Design magazine’s Hall of Fame and the Presidential Design Award for his work for the Grand Central Terminal renovation. . He took the Emmy Award 2010, Winner Outstanding Art Direction For Variety, Music ONonfiction Programming, 82nd Annual Academy Awards.

Rockwell serves as Chairman of the Board of the Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS (DIFFA), and as a board member of the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum and Citymeals-on-Wheels.To further our interest in fusing design and technology, David Rockwell joined a renowned team of architects to serve on the Board of Advisors for Gehry Technologies. This innovative alliance is organizing over the mission to push the limits of how technology and design can work together to ensure the greatest quality, sustainability and efficiency of architectural projects.

Outstanding projects
David Rockwell, the new York based architect has just completed work on the new Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Centre,  a public multi-screen theatre and cultural complex in the heart of the Lincoln Center in New York, and I thought it might be of interest. The Lincoln Centre is the world’s leading performing arts centre and is home to 12 world-class arts institutions including the Metropolitan Opera, the New York City Ballet and the New York City Opera.

The Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center is a collaboration between The Film Society and Lincoln Center, is a state-of-the-art, interactive media destination with acoustic and aesthetic elements. David Rockwell and the Rockwell Group have artfully turned existing, underutilized office space and a parking garage into a series of street-level spaces that will catch the eye of visitors with cinema-inspired design and the comforts of a modern theatre.  The new space consists of two Theatres, an amphitheatre and a café.

The idea behind Rockwell Group’s overall design vision for the West and East Lobbies, The Chandelier bar, Marquee nightclub, Jaleo restaurant and 3,000 guest rooms in the new Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas was to redefine the total experience of Las Vegas, from arriving to eating to dancing to sleeping.

The West Lobby is a kinetic space, centered around 8 giant central columns wrapped with mirrors and LCD screens. Rockwell Group’s LAB installed 384 displays on the columns and 26 behind the registration desk to create a platform for a variety of customized immersive digital experiences in the space. Off this lobby is the dream-like Vesper bar with a ceiling covered in metal mesh to look like a cloud, and shimmering silvers and whites throughout the space.

The Chandelier is a 3-story multi-layered, lounge and bar, covered with an undulating string and crystal curtain, which creates the sense of a fantastical inhabited chandelier. The LAB created a series of digital programming for both layers of strings, creating separate interactive experiences for viewers walking by and guests inside.¬¬¬¬