Publication: Building Bacardi: Architecture, Art & Identity
by Allan T. Shulman, Rizzoli New York, 2016
"Any way you drink it... Bacardi rum is the mixable one. Bacardi is best known for its trademark rum—and its red and black bat logo. Yet the famed spirits company has also been a force in the development of avant-garde art and architecture. True to the company slogan, Bacardi has asserted its corporate identity through buildings designed by a potent mix of architects with varying, sometimes radically different approaches to architecture. Corporate headquarters, distilleries, bottling plants, and executives’ private homes have shaped and reflected Bacardi’s position as a regional upstart, a national icon, and a global corporation with outposts in places such as Bermuda, Brazil, Cuba, Mexico, Europe and the United States.
Building Bacardi: Architecture, Art & Identity is the first book to explore the twentieth-century architectural legacy of the company. Rarely seen buildings by Mies van der Rohe, Philip Johnson, Felix Candel and Skidmore, Owings & Merrill pair with the work of Caribbean and Mexican architects like Esteba Rodríguez Castells, Enrique Luis Varela, SACMAG, Ermina Odoardo and Ricardo Eguilior, Ignacio Carerra Justiz, Hector Mestre, Manuel de la Colina, Henry Klumb and Toro y Ferrer. The book also investigates the often carefully integrated role of artwork, including prominent works by Cuban artists Conrado Massaguer, Antonio Gattorno and Felix Ramos, American illustrators Maxfield Parrish and William Gropper, the Brazilian sculptor Francisco Brennand, the Catalan painter Rosalía Pujó and the German artist Johannes Dietz.
The Bacardi story contains rich strands of connectivity to the story of modern architecture, Cuban and Latin
American history, Pan-Americanism, and the role of marketing and branding in crafting identity."