Partner Channing Blake
Art Students League of New York, 215 W 57th St, New York, NY 10019
Columbia University, 116th St & Broadway, New York, NY 10027
Dai-Ichi Hotel, 1 Chome-2-6 Shinbashi, Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 105-8621, Japan
New-York Historical Society Museum & Library, 170 Central Park West, New York, NY 10024
Odessa Street Beach Pavilion, Odessa St, Santa Rosa Beach, FL 32459
Pratt Institute, 200 Willoughby Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11205
Robert C. Wiley House, Sleepy Hollow Rd, New Canaan, CT 06840
Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art, Franciscan Way, Loretto, PA 15940
Roger C. Ferri (December 13, 1949 – November 20, 1991) was an architect known for his theories about integrating nature into buildings.
Ferri grew up in Wantagh, L.I. He was trained in classical painting before entering architecture school at the Pratt Institute, where he received his Bachelor of Architecture degree in 1972. He continued to study classical painting, figure drawing and anatomy, primarily at the Art Students League in Manhattan. Ferri also taught freehand drawing for architects at Columbia University and had been a consultant on curriculum to the School of Architecture at the University of Miami, where he also served as a visiting design critic.
From 1984 through 1986, he was a vice president and design principal of Welton Becket Associates in New York. During his time there, he designed more than $2 billion in construction, including the Dai-Ichi Hotel in Tokyo, mixed-use developments, housing and office buildings. In 1987, he opened his own firm, Roger Ferri Architect, and returned largely to small-scale work, designing a variety of houses and apartments.
Ferri also transformed an old gymnasium in Loretto, Pa., into the Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art and restored the conservation and permanent storage facilities of the New-York Historical Society in Manhattan. He also designed the installation of the society's Tiffany glass collection.
Ferri was best known for his theories about the integration of nature and architecture. One of his most ambitious schemes, widely published but never built, was a proposal for a 44-story glass skyscraper in Manhattan that included a series of terraces and setbacks with huge gardens and rocky landscapes. A house he built on Fire Island sits on a trellis base and was designed to seem as though the house itself were a balcony overlooking the ocean.
In 1979, Ferri was commissioned by the Museum of Modern Art to present a visionary scheme for a pedestrian city as an afterword to "Transformations in Modern Architecture," a large exhibition tracing 20 years of contemporary design trends. Ferri's design, titled "A Proposal for an American Architecture and Urbanism in the Post Petroleum Age," included a dome surrounded by a series of "Hypostyle Courtyards" that were halls in the shape of giant lilies 42 feet high.
"He recognizes the great gap between what the public want in their buildings and what most architects are giving them," wrote Colin Amery, architecture critic of The Financial Times in London. "It is time, he feels, and most critics would agree, for a new Renaissance."
He died in the New Milford Hospital, New Milford, Conn. He was 42 years old. He died of AIDS, said Channing Blake, his longtime companion and heir of Friendly's Ice Cream.