Remembering the Visionary Work of Rafael Viñoly

The world of architecture is mourning the death of renowned Uruguayan-American architect, Rafael Viñoly, who passed away at the age of 78.[0] Born in Montevideo, Uruguay in 1944, Viñoly attended the University of Buenos Aires and received his Master of Architecture in 1969.[1] Even before graduating, he had co-founded Estudio de Arquitectura, which eventually evolved into the firm MSGSSS.[2] Following a visiting professorship at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, Viñoly established his eponymous New York firm in 1983, which currently maintains additional offices in London, Buenos Aires, and Cupertino, California.[2]

Viñoly was recognized by a number of professional organizations, including the American Institute of Architects, the Royal Institute of British Architects, the Japan Institute of Architects, the Argentinian Sociedad Central de Arquitectos, and he was a National Design Award Finalist at the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in 2004.[1]

The architect is perhaps best known for his design of the super-skinny 432 Park Avenue skyscraper in New York, the City College of New York, Anne and Bernard Spitzer School of Architecture, Urban Design, and Landscape building, the performance space Jazz at Lincoln Center, the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts in Philadelphia, the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, and the “Walkie Talkie” skyscraper at 20 Fenchurch Street in London, which attracted controversy in 2013 when sunlight reflected off its mirrored concave side and melted various parts on a luxury car parked nearby.[3] He also faced criticism for 432 Park Avenue, a residential building he designed in New York, where residents reported banging and creaking noises coming from the 85-floor tower.[4]

Viñoly is survived by his wife Diana, an interior designer, and their three children, Roman, Lucas, and Nicolás.[4] In a statement on the Rafael Viñoly Architects website, Roman Viñoly said: “He was a visionary who will be missed by all those whose lives he touched through his work.[5] He leaves a rich legacy of distinctive and timeless designs that manifested in some of the world’s most recognizable and iconic structures.[6]

0. “Architect Rafael Viñoly, designer of Walkie Talkie building, dies aged 78” The Guardian, 4 Mar. 2023,

1. “Architect Rafael Viñoly passes away at age 78” The Architect's Newspaper, 3 Mar. 2023,

2. “Tribute: Rafael Viñoly (1944–2023)” Architectural Record, 3 Mar. 2023,

3. “Uruguayan architect Rafael Viñoly dies aged 78” Dezeen, 3 Mar. 2023,

4. “Rafael Viñoly: Uruguayan architect of London's ‘Walkie Talkie' dies aged 78” BBC, 4 Mar. 2023,

5. “Architect Rafael Viñoly Dead at 78” The Real Deal, 3 Mar. 2023,

6. “Renowned Architect Rafael Viñoly Dies at 78 – Commercial Observer” Commercial Observer, 3 Mar. 2023,

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