Portrait: Peter Marino, the Leather-clad Aesthete
Peter Marino can’t be pigeonholed. He is a man of opposites: star architect and biker, eccentric and sophisticate. Clad from head to foot in black leather, skull rings, Mohawk and dark sunglasses, you wouldn’t necessarily expect him to have an infallible sense of elegant luxury, a soft spot for motorbikes and a passion for art. And yet not only is that the case, but he has also decorated more flagship stores than any other architect.
What you should know about Marino:
- Born in New York in 1949 to Italian immigrants, he studied architecture at the prestigious Cornell University. Pop artist Andy Warhol soon recognized his potential. In New York in the 1970s, he hired the young architect for his townhouse on the Upper East Side. Afterwards, the enfant terrible designed the luxury department store Barney’s on Madison Avenue – his major breakthrough.
- With his team – by now 160 strong – the visionary nowadays dedicates his time to creating residential buildings, hotels and shops around the world. In Vienna, for example, the Louis Vuitton Global Store in the Goldenes Quartier bears Marino’s signature – a variable signature, as the enthusiastic art collector emphasizes. “The Pedro” – as the Mad Max macho calls himself – shows real tact when working with the sensitive fashion industry. He always pushes the products to the fore. He says imposing a uniform Marino style on stores is simply not an option.
- He is one of only a select few architects who is courted by competing brands. You see him not only at Louis Vuitton, but also at the shows of other luxury labels like Giorgio Armani, Chanel and Dior, whose shops he has also refurbished in metropolises around the world.