For tile lovers, a must-visit: The Bacardi Museum in downtown Miami, on Biscayne Boulevard. I make a point of driving past and ogling it whenever I’m in the city; in fact, this is a photograph by Ben Ritter, who I dragged to Miami to shoot a few projects for my tile book; I made him jump out of the car in the rain and snap it for me! (OK, I exaggerate: he actually shot from inside the car, with the window rolled down and a plastic bag over the end of his lens to keep it dry.) The sides of the concrete tower, designed by Puerto Rican architect Enrique Gutierrez in 1963 as offices for Bacardi, are tiled in a mural by Brazilian artist Francisco Brennand comprising 6-inch-square handpainted ceramics. Very Tropicalismo! Just behind it is Ignacio Carrera-Justiz’s 1973 addition, a crazy cantilevered design faced in inch-thich hammered-glass panels, based on a painting by Johannes Dietz.
I recently discovered that the museum is apparently open for tours by appointment! For more background, read this great article in Jet Set Modern mag (from which I cribbed the above info) here.
[photos: Ben Ritter]