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Santiago Suarez joined Renfro Design Group, Inc. in July 2015 after obtaining his M.S. degree in Historic Preservation from Columbia University in May 2015. His thesis “Grand Central Terminal’s Original Lighting” presents the initial scheme from 1913 and redefines the landmarked interior’s significance to introduce lighting concepts as fundamental aspects of the existing architectural language.
During his time as an intern at Aurora Lampworks in Brooklyn, he participated in recently completed preservation projects, including Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, 940 Madison Avenue Apple Store, and Carnegie Hall in New York; and Yale University Sterling Memorial Library in New Haven.
Before moving to New York City, Santiago practiced architecture at MGP Arquitectura y Urbanismo in Bogota, where he collaborated in residential and institutional projects generating schematic designs and assisting project managers. He participated in the design of Santa Maria de los Caballeros Chapel, the Gimnasio Campestre School Campus, and the winning proposal of the national competition for Plaza de la Hoja in Bogota.
He started learning about architectural lighting design as an intern at Rafael Lopez Uribe & Cia., a Colombian firm specialized in high-end residential projects. Shortly after graduating from The University of Los Andes, his thesis advisor, Giancarlo Mazzanti, invited him to join his competitions team to develop new ideas and continue his research on interactive design and construction technology.
As a preservation specialist and lighting designer, he collaborates in projects that include Saint Thomas Church in New York; New York Public Library; the Clark Manton Building in Williamstown, MA; Saint Petersburg Pier Park in FL; two high-end residential projects and a few historic buildings on the East Coast.
Santiago is a member of the Designers Lighting Forum of New York.
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