PP | How is it different for me this time in the Design District? Well, I’m living and
working here in the same space, in a historic house – not a sterile office.
HS | What have you learned, done differently/will do differently?
PP | It has been the most profound journey I have ever made. I am more spiritual,
humble, compassionate and forgiving now. I am a better person. I have had a lot of kind
help from dear friends and family along the way.
HS | What are you most proud of, and why?
What is/was your defining moment – personally, professionally?
PP | The birth of my son Nicolaes.
Nicolaes is now 22, and is an undergraduate in Florence, Italy; studying architecture. He
was born in Lucca, near Florence, where I was based for nearly 20 years, before
moving to South Beach.
Professionally? Wow – there have been so many great moments. I have led a
privileged professional life. Historically however, I would have to say, during a time in
the 1980’s, quite similar to where we are right now, with the United States economy,
during the Savings and Loan crisis, when the government also had to intervene.
Hubert R. Hudson Collection of Old Master Prints and Drawings
On the eve… a few months before the crisis unraveled, I was
having dinner with a new client (a banker) one night, in San
Francisco, when he took out his check book – wrote a check,
and stuffed it into my jacket pocket and said, “I have to put
some money in a safe place, invest this for me in Fine Art.
I have to get back to Texas; I’ll leave one of my planes for you
at the airport – get busy on this ASAP”.
the summit. The ice cap is longer there. If you have any questions about the current
state of the global environment, I recommend, as a primer, you see Al Gore’s film An
The Renaissance of Miami's Design District
The Miami Design District has been around for many years, and
had success and then fell to crime and an economic slump.
Peter Page strongly believes this latest incarnation of the Design
District is definitely back and will be successful this time around.
PP | In the 1990’s, when I first opened my office, in the ‘then Design District’ it was run
down, ‘tatty’ and dangerous. Concurrently, Craig Robins, the art collector was planning
to buy as much of the entire district as he could, and re-create it, morph it globally. The
previous habitants had fled to Dania, after a socio-economic shift from the 80’s in urban
As far as ‘the now District’, not only will it be successful – it already is, along with
Wynwood, with which it has an urban connectivity, where over twenty some odd
international galleries, have located, since the first Miami Beach Art Basil.
The Design District and Wynwood are now destinations for international clients and the
Design District is now competing with Dania, here in our small, ‘emerging global hub’ –
Miami. I see Miami, to Central and South America, as Hong Kong is, to the Pacific Rim.
I walk across the street to Café Fratelli Lyon, in the Vitra Building, where all of the local
cognoscenti hang out, and I feel like I am in Milano. Three blocks down, there is an
Ethiopian Restaurant, and then there is Jonathan Eismann’s world famous, Pacific
Time Restaurant. Living here you don’t know where you are! You could be in Istanbul or
Paris – you don’t know.
And then, you have my back yard, which feels like jungle Zimbabwe. It’s great!
I recently had the great
opportunity to chat with my
longtime friend, Peter...
HERB SOSA | Tell me about
your new space in the
PETER PAGE | I am sharing an
revival style 1920’s house,
with the fine artist David
Rohn. David has his studio
here, as well, and I my office.
As an historic preservationist,
for 40 years,it is a thrill to live,
and work,in this house. Hours
are by appointment only.
Services: Global, Design –
Build- Brand. We also build all
of the print + digital media
for Brand clients, including
Web Sites and Blogs.
HS | How has having Cancer
& HIV changed your outlook
on life, work, and design?
www.ambiente.us APRIL | ABRIL 2009
Peter Page | Miami's Renaissance Man | His work in Palazzos,
Blair House & his new plans for Miami's Design District
by Herb Sosa
Throughout his 20 year career as a Brand Professional, and as a Designer, Mr. Peter
Page has deftly integrated an understanding and respect for history with the needs of
the present. Combining roles as historian, preservationist and cutting-edge designer,
Page has received accolades and recognition for projects in London, Paris, Rome,
Bangkok, Los Angeles, New York, Washington D.C., San Francisco and Miami.
Mr. Page's career began with the renovation of a residential Edwardian townhouse to a
mixed Residential/Commercial building in San Francisco at the age of 22. The project
earned him a commendation from the San Francisco Department of City Planning for
its role in both preserving and enhancing the historic and commercial vitality of the
neighborhood. His first brush with the Retail Industry was also in San Francisco with
Marrimeko and Design Research, which spawned such companies as
William-Sonoma, Crate and Barrel and later Pottery Barn. In San Francisco Page
interned with Charles Pfister, of Skidmore,
PP|Having been diagnosed with HIV in the 1980’s as a gay man was a death sentence.
I have been HIV positive for 20 years. There really isn't a lot of solid science around for
‘late term’, as it is called for people over 20 years; however, it is practically
nomenclature, one of these three events will kill you, in late term - Pneumonia - a
Neurological event (Encephalothopy) - Cancer (Non- Hodgkin’s lymphoma).
I have had them all. I believe I got phenomena because my body was run down from an
18 hour flight from Hong Kong. As far as the Encephalothopy + Cancer goes . . . I've just
recorded it, as a whopper, of an Hiroshima breakdown - after the stress of 35 years, of
a public global life, and 5000 mph. work speed, with very little sleep and proper
nutrition. My body, in my opinion, just blew up, after so many years of non-stop work. A
human body and mind can only do so much. The Latin root of disease is diss- ease. I
have learned how to slow down now, eat organically and get my exercise and rest. I now
exalt modern medicine.
As far as my work goes + design goes, I can definably say, I am more affected by nature
in design now. Having touched death, and come back to life, enhances “everything”;
especially your senses, and creativity.
I follow, what I call, the ‘fashion curve’, on the internet each day, as a stockbroker would
follow his digits. I have become creative, with money, for my clients and myself, in this
economic crisis, in ways I could never have imagined. I encourage everyone out there
living with HIV not to live in fear – take care of your selves; your bodies, minds and
spirits – follow your dreams.
HS|Tell me about Rescue Earth and Branding Forces? What are they, what is your
participation and how have they influenced your life?
PP|The founder of Rescue Earth engaged me to take his CBO, grass roots non-profit
organization, and give it a global Brand. In so doing, I found David Steinberg, the man
behind the mountain at Branding Forces. David is the most talented young man I have
met in years. He is a master programmer and totally creative. I wrote the content and
created the programs and connected the
dots with the school system and put the program into effect, and with David’s kind help,
created www.rescueearth.org . There are still some “kinks”, back-end programming, to
finish; however I am very proud of the results.
HS |What is Green Mining, what will you/it do, and how did you get started in this?
PP | Green Mining is removing the minerals you are mining, from the earth, and
returning the earth you have mined, to its original organic condition after the removal of
the minerals and/or enhance it to make it sustainable– both for the earth, and people
living there. I just invented it really, with a recent client.
A friend of a client (my business is only by referral), approached me with a unique
project, to Brand and handle the print + digital media, for an IPO launch on Wall Street,
to raise equity, to mine large tracts of land, he had inherited from his Grandfather, in
Western Argentina + Eastern Chile.
I told him I would accept the project only under a ‘green’ brand, and the ‘green’ brand,
would actually become the Brand. Green Copper Mining has never existed. My advice
was to create a holding company in Europe, close to European Green Bonds, issued by
many European banks, and the International agencies i.e., The United Nations in Paris
and Bruxelles, where he could maneuver with global environmental agencies, and
rather than launch with New York, take the IPO to the Dax in Zurich for further leverage.
Put all of the ‘Green’ components, with scientific teams, and experts in the field, in
operation before the launch, and then go. The larger issue is the creation of a Green
Mining Trust to guide this new Industry.
These are the fun projects, wherein, I stipulate in my contract, that I have total control
over all Art Direction, and I get to ‘flip flop’ around with the ‘camera crew’, in helicopters
– which I love.
I am fearless; I climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, at the age of 16. I can assure you; I
hacked my way up the final several hundred feet of a glacial ice cap, to
|Peter Page | Photo by Rubem Robierb
|Peter Page| Photo by Robert Mapplethorpe / 1980 + The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation
MIAMI RIVER INN
70's Inspired Purses
APRIL 16-19, 2009
MIAMI LATIN GAY
People for the
April 18, 2009
Mapplethorpe, Madonna and NYC in the 80's
Gee Wiz – what an amazing time!
It was 1980, and the East Village in New York was in the middle
of the most major new artistic movement since the New York
Expressionists of the 50’s.
I was a kid and in graduate school at the NYU –The Institute of
Fine Art, uptown in the old Doris Duke mansion near the Met.
The Institute gave me entre into the world of art in New York
then, and I became friends with Andy Warhol, his entire tribe,
and Keith Haring, Julian Schnabel, Kenny Scharf – wow the list
goes on. We all partied till’ we dropped, in the then crumbling,
East Village. Madonna, before her first film, was dancing on the
bar for tips at the Pyramid Club. Craig Coleman, the sculpture,
was cutting down old telephone poles at three in the morning
for wood for his work. It was high energy, high art and design
and a whole new world. Robert was also a part of it. He led the
pack in the new world photography department.
HS| What was working in Blaire House like? What did you do there, when, and how did
this come about?
PP | I really can’t get too much into Blaire House. It would be a book. By the end of it, I
was so embedded in the Reagan Administration, Nancy Reagan and I ended up
reading astrology charts together. It was my defining moment in Washington, that’s for
sure. I also remodeled the historic Hay Adams down the street from Blaire House
during the time.
HS | How is opening this latest space for you different from past spaces?
The next morning, when I was fumbling in my pocket, and found the check, I fainted on
my living room floor after I saw the amount of the check. That was the creation of the
Hubert R. Hudson Collection of Old Master Prints and Drawings which I formed, and
branded, for him as a component, of his families investment portfolio.
As a young man, with one swipe of a pen, Hubert threw me into
the global financial milieu, which I have come to know, in Art,
Design and Architecture.
For appointments with, or to chat with Peter Page, please contact him at|
CLICK HERE for more articles by Herb Sosa
Copyright © AMBIENTE MAGAZINE. Do not reproduce without citing these sources.