Rafael Contreras strongly believes that architecture should evolve with technology, designing daring, imaginative buildings that are inspired by nature and challenge conventional methods and forms.
Born in Peru and now based in Australia, Rafael completed his architecture degree at the Peruvian University of Applied Sciences, and his master’s in architecture and urbanism at the Architectural Association in London. As a lead architect at Zaha Hadid Architects, Rafael led international teams on major commissions and competition-winning bids, including the Grand Theatre of Rabat, Tokyo National Stadium and the new Beijing Daxing International Airport, the world’s largest airport terminal.
In 2016, Rafael and Monica Earl co-founded Contreras Earl Architecture (CEA) with the vision to design original, inventive buildings that contribute to the evolution of architecture and toward a better future for our communities and cities. Using advanced software, robotics, materials and construction processes, CEA is liberated from traditional building practices and forms, free to explore creative, avant-garde ideas for the benefit of the environment and people. This includes ground-breaking buildings such as the Living Coral Biobank, the world’s first dedicated coral conservation facility, and Skyportz, Australia’s first air taxi vertiport, as well as other landmark developments, including The Lanes Residences and 272 Hedges Pedestal.
CEA works with a team of local and international collaborators to harness the latest technologies and create dynamic architecture driven by climate-resilient principles. The outcomes are unique and varied, with fluid, functional forms that bring beauty and joy to the public and private realm.