For 20 years, almost as long as they’ve been a couple, Rodman Primack and Rudy Weissenberg told friends they were thinking of moving to Mexico. They often traveled there, Primack in his role as an auction-house executive and later creative director of the Design Miami fairs, Weissenberg as a television producer, and both fell hard for its relaxed pace and cultural éclat. They built a circle of friends. They started buying from the local art galleries. Still, when they unpacked their boxes in Mexico City this past spring, “everyone was like, ‘WHAT?!?’ ” Weissenberg says. “We discovered there’s a difference between saying you’re moving to Mexico and moving to Mexico.”
They haven’t looked back. The idea, incubated for so long that it slowly evolved with them, was that Mexico City would be a new home base—while they still retained a foothold in New York City—that would give Primack additional headquarters for his thriving interior design–and–fabric business, RP Miller (he took a step back from the fair world in 2019), and give Weissenberg a vantage from which to launch new ventures in enlightened real estate development (he recently earned a degree at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design). “What do you add to New York City nowadays in the design space?” he asks. “Mexico is a place where you can still add something to the story, where you can have an impact.”
Their friend Tatiana Bilbao, one of the country’s leading architects, was expanding her studio in the capital and offered to share the new floor with them. That same afternoon, they heard about a two-bedroom apartment not far from the office in a high-rise they’d long admired, designed by Augusto Álvarez in the early 1950s as a kind of dormitory for a posh residential neighborhood, where the widows, aunts, and grandmothers of said residents tended to live. Apart from its narrative appeal—
both men have a fondness for their grandmothers—the building was one of the city’s first apartment towers in the modernist style, a period they love. Before the papers were signed, they knew what the backbone of their interior would be: a handful of slick ’70s pieces Weissenberg had inherited from his Guatemalan grandparents, including Afra and Tobia Scarpa’s trippy caramel leather lounge seating, which now commands the living room.
To round things out, they decided to shop locally. As they began visiting artists and designers around the city, Primack notes, “we realized that there’s so much great design happening in Mexico right now, but not really a platform for it. It just became clear that this would be something exciting for both of us to work on together.” And why not? Their new collaboration, AGO Projects (a loose translation of the Spanish “I do”), will represent a stable of contemporary creators and aid in the realization of new work. It debuted in September with a show in their shared office space, which has been carved up into two flexible rooms.
It helps that the pair’s tastes are remarkably well aligned, in work and in life. “We love the handmade—for us the handmade is truly luxury,” Weissenberg says, a sentiment borne out in the custom-loomed carpets, woven rush chairs, vintage ceramics from the Lagunilla flea market, and a hairy sisal bench—sort of a push broom crossed with an Afghan hound—crowding their apartment. Many of the designers in AGO’s roster make cameos here, among them Fabien Cappello, Fernando Laposse, and Pedro y Juana.