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  • Interview with Caribbean Architect – Marvin Goodman

    Posted on August 12th, 2009 Architecture Caribbean 1 comment
    Marvin Goodman

    Marvin Goodman


    Marvin Goodman,
    FAIA, FJIA is a New Jersey born Architect who has been practicing Architecture & Planning in Jamaica since 1961. He is the Principal of Marvin D. Goodman & Associates and a visiting lecturer at the Caribbean School of Architecture. He was gracious enough to take time out of his busy schedule for an interview with Architecture Caribbean. Here is a portion of the interview, see below for the entire interview.

    Architecture Caribbean: Who is Marvin Goodman?
    Marvin Goodman: Architect

    AC: Where did you study?
    MG: University of Florida

    AC: How did you end up in Jamaica?
    MG: I was invited to come to Jamaica for 6 months to finish a hotel then under construction. Work went on for another year and then I was being asked to do some other jobs so I stayed for a while longer. I have remained now for many decades. I am married to a Jamaican and feel completely at home in my adopted country.

    AC: Who are your favorite architects (International and Caribbean) and what do you admire about their work?
    MG: Frank Lloyd Wright, Oscar Niemeyer, Eero Saarinen, I.M. Pei

    AC: Are there important projects in your body of work which you’ve designed that haven’t been built, or plans that haven’t carried out?
    MG: One project I would like to see re-appear is a Hotel I did for Caesars at Rose Hall. It was very Caribbean, incorporated water and nature throughout.

    AC: What advice would you give to Architecture students?
    MG: My advice to students in Architecture is:

    1. Travel. Looking at the built environment in many places will open your eyes
    2. Learn (don’t just talk) about Green Architecture in all its facets. It is not that easy; good design is very complicated and requires balancing any number of inputs to come up with a useful solution.
    3. Learn to draw. Travelling and sketching is the time-honored way to actually ‘see.’ The computer is an indispensible tool but it also gives the illusion that the design is understood when it is not. Many schools are now banning the use of computers in the first two years of study.

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