February 1, 2004
Roma–ach’s Cuban Creations
Exiled from his home, Cuban architect Mario Roma–ach lost his place in history. A fellow Havanan writes him—and the city’s Modern architecture—back into the canon.
Before he left his native Cuba, architect Mario Roma–ach completed nearly four dozen projects on the island nation. Among his more notable residential works were the Havana home for Luis Humberto and Evangelina Vida–a, built in 1952-3, which contained an artful mix of materials—cedar, brick, terrazzo, and clay—and boasted no smooth concrete walls; his 1957 house for Guillermina de Soto Bonavía and Rufino Alvarez, the design for which drew upon both Cuban and Japanese traditions; and the Ana Carolina Font House, built in 1956, which also recalled Eastern influences with its cantilevered roof and wooden butterfly screens.