Elena Manferdini graduated from the University of Civil Engineering (Bologna, Italy) and later received her Master of Architecture and Urban Design from the University of California Los Angeles (Los Angeles, CA).
In 2004 she founded Atelier Manferdini, a design based office in Los Angeles, California. The firm has been highly visible as an advocate of design excellence and has been recognized internationally for its ability to create imaginative architecture, art and product design. The office is based on a multi-scale work methodology and embraces the philosophy that design can participate in a wide range of multidisciplinary developments that define our culture.
Elena Manferdini was recently awarded the 2013 Graham Award for architecture, she received the 2013 ACADIA Innovative Research Award of Excellence, and she was selected as recipient for the Education of the Year presidential award given by the AIA Los Angeles. In 2011 she was one of the recipients of the prestigious annual grants from the United States Artists (USA) in the category of architecture and design.
Finally her Blossom design for Alessi received the Good Design Award in 2011.
Currently Atelier Manferdini is constructing a permanent art installation for the Hubert Humphrey Hospital in Downtown Los Angeles. She recently completed the design and construction of two commercial stores on Abbott Kinney (Venice CA), an art pavilion for the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles. Last year she completed a cruise boat in Kyoto (Japan) and a fabric installation for Seika University. The office recently completed two large scale projects in New York and United Kingdom; an interactive installation for Sephora’s newly opened scent museum in New York’s Meatpacking District, and an “Inverted Crystal Cathedral” art piece for the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery in the UK, sponsored by swarovski. In the past the office was also working on designing a single family villa in Ascona (Switzerland), a 250,000 sq.ft. master plan in Macerata (Italy) including 80 apartments, a museum and an open theater. Atelier Manferdini has been selected to design a 150,000 sq.ft. residential tower in Guiyang (China) along with other 10 leading design firms from around the world. The firm has collaborated with internationally renowned companies such as: Swarovski, Sephora, Driade, MTV, Fiat, Nike, Alessi, Ottaviani, Moroso, Valentino, Arktura and Lerival.
In 2006 Ms. Manferdini was invited to design the West Coast Pavilion representing the USA at the Beijing Biennale in the Chinese Millennium Museum. In 2008, 2010 and 2013 she curated the West Coast USA session of the Beijing Biennale exhibition. She has lectured widely, including at MIT, Princeton, GSD and Bauhaus.
In addition to leading her design practice, in the past 10 years Elena Manferdini has been teaching architectural design studios and technology seminars for the Graduate and Undergraduate programs at the Southern California Institute of Architecture. Currently she is the Coordinator of the Graduate Thesis Program at SCI-Arc. She has also held Visiting Professor positions at Cornell University, University of Pennsylvania, University of California Berkeley and Seika University.