Here are Mexican architects considered to be the most representative of Mexico, listed in alphabetical order.
We start with the architects that are considered to have instituted Mexican architecture.
Founding Mexican Architects
Luis Barragán was born in 1902. He studied civil engineering in the Free School of Engineering of Guadalajara.
Luis Barragán is the most famous Mexican architect, reknowned worldwide. His most important projects are the Urbanization of Pedregal de San Ángel and the Ortega house.
He was responsible for the restoration of the Capuchin Convent of the Sacramentarias and the well-known Satellite Towers.
In 1976, the Modern Art Museum of New York organized an exhibition in its rooms entitled The Architect Luis Barragán. That same year he received the National Prize for Mexican Architecture.
In 1980, he was recognized with the Pritzquer Prize. He is the only Mexican architect with this prestigious award.
Luis Barragán died in 1988.
Teodoro González de León
Teodoro González de León was born in 1926. He studied at the National Autonomous University of Mexico.
Most of his works are in Mexico City. He was made an honorary member of the American Institute of Architects, the Academy of Arts, the International Academy of Architecture, and the National College.
He died in 2016.
Ricardo Legorreta was born in 1931. He studied at the National Autonomous University of Mexico.
The Camino Real Hotel in Mexico City and BBVA Bancomer Tower are his most representative works. His works are based on the creation of elementary spaces, intense colors, and the forcefulness of the architectural structure.
His career had international growth with the house of Ricardo Montalbán in Los Angeles.
In 1991, he won the National Prize for Sciences and Arts in Fine Arts by the Mexican government. In 2011 he won an award by the Imperial Prize Art Association of Japan.
He died in 2011.
The Mexican architect and painter was born in 1905. He studied architecture at the Academy of San Carlos and the National Autonomous University of Mexico.
His most important work are the murals of 4,000 m² of the Central Library of University City of the UNAM.
His projects include the new building of the Bank of Mexico, The Museo Casa Estudio Diego Rivera, and the design and construction of 26 elementary schools in Mexico City.
He became a prominent architect and helped introduce functionalist architecture to Mexico. He created the career of ‘Architect Engineer’ at the National Polytechnic Institute.
He died in 1982.
Mario Pani Darqui
Mario Pani was born in 1911. He studied architecture in France and Mexico.
He designed the National Conservatory of Music, the Urban Complex Nonoalco Tlaltelolco, the Normal School of Teachers, and Insignia Tower, all in Mexico City.
He designed the first international hotel in Mexico and the first macro urban planning project known as Ciudad Satélite (the first multifamily building and condominiums in Mexico City).
He died in 1993.
Pedro Ramírez Vazquez
Pedro Ramírez Vázquez was born in 1919. He studied architecture at the National Autonomous University of Mexico.
In his first years he designed a structure for rural schools that gave origin to 35,000 schools in the country.
He became one of Mexico’s most prolific architects. His career spanned nearly seven decades. He designed Mexico pavilions at three world fairs. He was in charge of creating the visual identity and iconic logo of the 1968 Mexico Olympic Games.
Pedro Ramírez Vázquez was the founding rector of the Metropolitan Autonomous University.
He died in 2013.
Antonio Rivas Mercado
Antonio Rivas Mercado was born in 1853. He studied in Paris and was influenced by mozarabic architecture.
Upon his return to Mexico he taught in the schools of Engineering and Architecture, instituting teaching methods that separated the two professions.
His most notable and well-known work is the Column of Independence.
Other important works in Mexico City include the house on Calle de Londres, number 6, the current Wax Museum, the restoration of the façade of the old City Hall, the terminal of the Customs of Railways in Tlatelolco, the Municipal Palace of Tlalpan, his tomb in the French Pantheon, and the decoration of some of the halls of the National Palace.
Antonio Rivas Mercado was the Mexican architect who designed the Independence Column in 1910.
It is known as the Ángel de la Independencia “Angel of Independence” and is an iconic monument of Mexico City.
Other works include the Juarez Theater, the reconversion of the large house of the Chapingo hacienda, the remodeling of the hacienda of Santa María Tecajete, and the hacienda of San Bartolomé Del Monte.
He died in 1927.
Ruth Rivera Marín
Ruth Rivera Marin was born in 1927. She was the first woman to enter the School of Engineering and Architecture (ESIA) of the National Polytechnic Institute of Mexico and the first woman to receive a degree as an architectural engineer.
Her most noted work was the creation of the Anahuacalli Museum. She co-designed the Mexican Pavilion for the Century 21 Fair in Seattle.
Rivera was head of the Department of Architecture of the National Institute of Fine Arts.
She wrote various books and articles and defended the architectural and artistic heritage of Mexico.
She was a member of the College of Architects and the Society of Mexican Architects. She waspresident of the International Union of Women Architects and vice president of Mexican Architects.
Her last position was as head of the Department of Architecture of the National Institute of Fine Arts (INBA), from 1959 to 1969.
She died in 1969.
Jose Villagrán García
Jose Villagrán García was born in 1901. He studied at the National School of Architecture, UNAM.
He authored Granja Sanitaria de Popotla in 1925. He is considered the Father of modern Mexican architecture.
His projects include the Tuberculosis Hospitals in Huipulco, the Cardiology Hospital, and the Gea González Hospital. In 1942, he organized the National Plan of Hospitals, with the Dr. Salvador Zubirán. In this plan, important Mexican architects participated with the collaboration of the principal medical specialists.
He was in charge of the National School of Architecture from 1933 to 1935. He is the author of Theory of Architecture (1963). Villagrán’s conception of architecture was focused on the genres of hospital and school architecture. He was part of many fundamental projects for Mexican architecture. He also built numerous office buildings, cinemas, hotels, and markets.
In 1968, the government of Mexico awarded him the National Arts Prize.
He died in 1985.
Contemporary Mexican Architects
Miguel Angel Aragonés
Miguel Angel Aragonés was born in 1963. He is self-taught.
His career spans for more than two decades. He is an exhibitor and lecturer at multiple Mexican and foreign universities. His main works are the Casa Lago de Guadalupe, Casa Arroyo, Casa Arrayanes, Avellanos, Eucaliptos, Hotel Encanto de Acapulco and the lighting design of Casa Cubos.
Recognitions include: in 2006, Best Lighting in Architecture for his project ‘Eucalyptus’ by the International Association of Lighting Designers and the European Lighting Designers Association. He also won the Light & Architecture Design Award.
Tatiana Bilbao was born in 1972. She received a degree in arquitecture from the Universidad Iberoamericana.
She was an Advisor in the Ministry of Development and Housing of the Government of Mexico City.
Her architectural work includes the Culiacán Botanical Garden, the Pilgrimage Route in Jalisco, an institutional building on the UDEM campus, a research center of the Sea of Cortez, and a social housing prototype displayed at the 2015 Chicago Biennial.
In 2019, her studio was the featured architecture firm in the Architect’s Studio series of exhibitions in Louisiana. The studio has had work featured in the Graham Foundation, Chicago Architecture Biennial, Venice Biennale, Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Monterrey, Museo Amparo, T-space Gallery and Centre Pompidou.
In 2010, she was named as an Emerging Voice by the Architecture League of New York. In 2012 Bilbao was recognized with the Kunstpreis in Berlin. In 2014, she was awarded the Global Award for Sustainable Architecture Prize by the LOCUS Foundation. In 2019 she was awarded the Marcus Prize Award. In 2020, she received the Tau Sigma Delta Gold Medal of Honorees Architzier A + Awards.
Fernanda Canales was born in 1974. She received a doctorate from Polytechnic University of Madrid.
Her projects include Casa Eva and the Centro Cultural Elena Garro. She has published several books and articles. In 2014 she published Architectura en Mexico 1910-2010.
Alberto Kalach was born in 1960. He studied at Universidad Iberoamerica and Cornell University.
His most important works include the Jose Vasconcelos Library, Reforma 27, Casitas by The Sea, and Casa Wabi. The Vasconcelos Library is considered one of his most iconic works.
Alberto Kalach uses simple line designs and select materials. He gives priority to vegetation.
Mauricio Rocha was born in 1965. He studied arquitecture in the Autonomous University of Mexico.
His most notable work is the Compensatory Care Center for the Blind and Weak”, Iztapalapa.
His works include the School of Visual Arts of Oaxaca, and the San Pablo Oztotepec Market.
In 2001 he was awarded the Premio Covarrubias. In 2002 he received the Silver Medal at the VII Biennial of Architecture in Mexico for the “Center for the Attention of Blind People”. In 20024 he received a Gold Medal in the VIII Biennial of Architecture in Mexico for the “Mercado de San Pablo Oztotepec”.
He has managed to redefine Mexican architecture by understanding and taking advantage of indigenous techniques, materials and environments.
Michel Rojkind was born in 1969. He studied at the Universidad Iberoamericana.
His works include Casa F2, Casa pR34, Liverpool Department Store Interlomas, Portal of Awareness/Nescafe. He has also designed restaurants apartment buildings, markets and cinemas.
In 2007, he was recognized for his design of the Nestlé Chocolate Museum. He was awarded the International Architecture Award in 2008. In 2010, he was named as one of the “Country’s Treasured Architects” by the Mexican Civil Registry.
He has contributed to well-known architectural publications and has gained international acclaim.
Fernando Romero was born in 1971. He received a degree in architecture from Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City.
He worked on projects in the Netherlands. He was project leader for the winning work Casa da Musica in Portugal, on land considered a UNESCO world heritage site. The Soumaya Museum was designed under his direction in 2010. This structure is considered an icon of contemporary Mexican architecture.
The Soumaya Museum was designed under the direction of Fernando Romero in 2010.
This structure is considered an icon of contemporary Mexican architecture.
He is a member of the American Institute of Architects and the College of Architects of Mexico City.
Juan Sordo Madaleno
Javier Sordo Madaleno was born in 1956. He completed his degree in Architecture at the Universidad Iberoamericana.
Important constructions include the Reforma 222 building, the Bosques Corporate Center, the Westin Regina Hotel, Moliére Dos22, Antara, the José María Escrivá church, Andares, Antea, Toreo Parque Central, Residencial Artesia, Andamar Center, Grand Hyatt Playa del Carmen and 28 buildings for the Teletón Foundation.
He has been recognized nationally and internationally. Awards include “Best building” in the Health category for the CRIT project in Tampico within the framework of the World Architecture Festival (WAF) 2009. In 2009 he received the “Gold Award for Development and Design Excellence” award granted by the ICSC recognizing the innovation of the Andares project. In 2013 the “Trayectorias” award granted by the College of Architects of Mexico City.
He has been a great influence on Mexican architecture. He is famous for the use of chiseled concrete in huge minimalist blocks.