Inside SCI-Arc

CLASS NOTES: spring 2011


Dean Nota, FAIA (B.Arch ‘74), principal of Hermosa Beach-based Dean Nota Architect, recently completed two residential projects in the South Bay—Yu Residence on the Hermosa Beach Strand and the Olivares Residence in Manhattan Beach. Both homes were shown in an exclusive Manhattan Beach home tour organized by Arts Manhattan in April. Nota’s work is featured in two new publications, Avi Friedman’s Narrow Houses, published by Princeton Architectural Press, and California Cool: Residential Modernism Reborn, by San Francisco photographer Russell Abraham.


David Hidalgo (B.Arch ‘82) of David Hidalgo Architects had two projects featured in an article published last year by Urban Land Institute (ULI), “Retooling RETAIL Next-Generation Models.” His Plaza Mexico in Lynwood, California appeared in a different ULI piece focused on models of economic recovery, while his La Gran Plaza in Forth Worth, Texas was listed among 10 shopping centers around the world serving as an exemplary revitalization projects. Hildago’s recent work has included commercial centers throughout Southern California, Arizona, Texas, Georgia and Nevada, with special emphasis on the renovation and rejuvenation of aging retail centers.

Edmund Einy (B.Arch ‘84), a design director at gkkworks, has received a NEXT LA Design Award from AIA Los Angeles for his Grass-Road House in Simi Valley and a Design Award from AIA San Fernando Valley for a house designed by gkkworks in Alibaug, India.

Morgan Connolly (M.Arch ‘85), owner of Morgan Connolly Architects, is currently developing a guide book for tours given by the Institute of Classical Art & Architecture in San Francisco. Connolly’s work also includes a research project on 18th-century Swedish manor houses sponsored by a grant she received from the Swedish government. Her recent projects include a winery in Northern California.

Ned Engs (M.Arch ‘89) of E4 Architects appeared in an ArchDaily article discussing the challenges of practicing in a slow economy. The feature showcased several projects by Engs including the Corey Helford Gallery in Culver City, the Alpine Street Residence in Pasadena, and the Avenue del Mar Residence in Carpinteria, California.


Michael Poris (M.Arch ‘90) has recently completed 10 years of service on the SCI-Arc Board of Trustees. He is an active board member of the Heidleberg Project and the Architectural Salvage Warehouse, both in Detroit, as well as a museum committee member at Cranbrook Academy of Art. His firm, Michael Poris Associates, was recently honored with seven Detroit Home Awards for two residential projects—taking 1st place in all categories entered. Poris is currently designing the Woodward Garden Block development in Midtown Detroit, which includes renovating a historic theatre into a 1,200-person performance space, and designing a 60-unit HUD apartment building. In addition, Poris has been working with the City of Detroit Downtown Development Authority and the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation on façade improvements and solar-powered lighting for six vacant historic downtown commercial buildings.

Elissa Scrafano (M.Arch ‘90) of Scrafano Architects received a 2010 AIA Design Award for the serene retreat designed for musician Nate Mendel. A collaboration between Scrafano Architects and Gus Duffy Architects, the project was also featured by Design Bureau Magazine. Scrafano’s collaborative architecture firm comprises several SCI-Arc alumni.

Christopher Mercier (M.Arch2 ‘91) has exhibited some of his recent paintings in the Solid Stripes Group Show hosted at the Merry Karnowsky Gallery in Los Angeles. Among recent projects, Mercier and partner Douglas Pierson of Inglewood-based (fer)Studio, together with Design East of La Brea (DeLab), hosted an event dubbed CaliFERnication to present their new master plan for the city of Inglewood, which includes an MTA station.

Barbara Bestor (M.Arch ‘92) of Barbara Bestor Architecture has been nominated for a 2011 James Beard Foundation Award in the restaurant design category for Pitfire Pizza in Los Angeles. She produced a ceiling-mounted light sculpture for the 2010 MOCA Gala and recently designed Silent Disco, a site-specific installation in the SCI-Arc Gallery, the latter featured widely in publications and blogs including T Magazine, Los Angeles Times, Dwell, LA Weekly, Interior Design and Architect. Bestor is currently Chair of the Graduate School of Architecture at Woodbury University.

Geofrey Collins (M.Arch ‘92), of Topanga- based studio Geofrey Collins Living Design, has designed a new house in Venice as well as a remodel in Mar Visa, California. Due for completion this year is a pyramid house in Tokyo.

Andrew Grieg (M.Arch ’92) is a founding director of UK-based Greig Ling Structural Engineers and Greig Ling Architecture, whose major projects include a flagship retail store in London’s West End, a Baptist Church in Tulsa, private residences throughout the UK, and conservation work in London. Recently completed buildings include a $1.7m residential complex and $6.6m mixed-use scheme in London. Grieg serves as a senior lecturer in Tectonics and visiting critic at Kingston School of Architecture in London, where he founded the Constructed Environment Course for graduate students. He is also currently working on his own house in South London, where he lives with his wife and three children.

Jason Shirriff (B.Arch ‘92) recently completed the 149 Mason St. Apartments, a 52-unit studio apartment transnational housing for formerly homeless individuals in San Francisco’s Tenderloin neighborhood. In 2010, he won a personal architectural illustration Award of Excellence from the American Society of Illustrators for his ink design sketch Dubai Series #4. Shirriff is an Associate Architect at HKIT Architects in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Jeremy Levine (M.Arch ‘93), principal of Jeremy Levine Design, is featured in Dwell’s special issue “100 Kitchens We Love” for his sustainable kitchen renovation project in which he took an old, small kitchen in Eagle Rock—a Los Angeles neighborhood, and opened it up to sunlight, warmth and space. Most recently, Levine lectured at the Cavim Institute of Design and Architecture in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Gaston Nogues (B.Arch ‘93) and Benjamin Ball (B.Arch ‘94) of Ball-Nogues Studio were featured in Architect magazine in connection with their office move from Los Angeles’ Old Bank District to a much larger studio space in nearby Boyle Heights. The design duo was also nominated by Papermag in the magazine’s “Beautiful People 2011” edition. Ball-Nogues Studio is currently at work on a project commissioned by the city of Edmonton in Alberta, Canada.

<>strong>Iris Anna Regn (M.Arch ’94) of DurfeeRegn is currently working on the Broodwork collaborative series, which includes multi-disciplinary exhibitions and programs to explore, understand and interrelate the spaces of the individual, the family, and community in the city. Regn is also a contributing writer to the Herman Miller Lifework Blog.

Jennifer Siegal (M.Arch ‘94) of Los Angeles-based Office of Mobile Design has received a Visions and Voices grant from University of Southern California, where she is a Visiting Professor. The grant will fund Motopia, a symposium on mobile and prefabricated architecture to be held at USC in November 2011. Most recently, Siegal lectured at the Adaptive Architecture conference on Bio-Inspired Materials at the Building Center in London. Her work is scheduled to be featured in upcoming publications including Temporary Architecture Now from Taschen, Habiter un ConContainer published by Ouest France/Edilarge, Low Budget Houses from Loft Publications, and various magazines including Azure and Fast Company. Siegal is expecting a baby girl on June 5.

Jeffrey Allsbrook (M.Arch ‘95), co-founder of the Los Angeles-based Standard, has recently completed a new retail + restaurant complex in Laguna Beach, California. Informed by traditional Bahamian style, the concept store is the first restaurant design done by Standard and also marks the first time Allsbrook’s firm has designed furniture. Standard is also responsible for the design of the James Perse and Jenni Kayne boutiques.

Gordon Kipping (M.Arch2 ‘95), principal of New York-based G TECTS, has been named architect of The National Jazz Museum in Harlem, which is set to occupy a 14,000-square-foot location in a new building across the street from the legendary Apollo Theatre. Kipping is collaborating with the NY office of Bruce Mau Design on the exhibition design. This summer, in addition to relocating to a new 5,000-square-foot office on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, G TECTS is scheduled to release its first monograph, G1—a 1,245-page mega-volume documenting 60 projects designed during the firm’s first 10 years.

Janice Shimizu (M.Arch ‘97) and Joshua Coggeshall (M.Arch ‘97) of Shimizu + Coggeshall Architects recently won an AIA Indianapolis Merit Award for their Tuna Canyon Residence in Topanga, while a residence designed by the two on 25th Street in Santa Monica earned a LEED Platinum Certificate. Coggeshall is Graduate Director of the Architecture program at Ball State University in Indiana, where his thesis students won an R+D citation from Architect magazine in 2010. Shimizu is a design faculty member and just completed a project in collaboration with Indiana’s Department of Natural Resources.

Andrea Lenardin Madden (M.Arch ‘98) contributed to the new publication In the Absence of Raimund Abraham, published by Hatje Cantz in a follow up to the conference with the same name hosted by MAK Vienna. Edited by Peter Noever and Wolf Prix, the book also includes contributions by SCI-Arc Director Eric Owen Moss, and faculty members Michael Rotondi and Alexis Rochas.

Paola Giaconia (M.Arch ‘99) has recently completed work on the new Cultural Center of the medieval town of Ranica in Northern Italy, which houses a public library, an auditorium, a kindergarten, and a school for dance and theatre. Early this year, the Center was selected by an international jury chaired by Swiss architect Aurelio Galfetti as the best public building completed in its Province in the last 10 years. Giaconia is a partner at Image, a consultancy based in Florence, Italy that unites editorial work, independent research, creative thinking and communication in the field of architecture.


Adam Goldstein (M.Arch ‘01) and Christian Schultz (M.Arch ‘01) of Santa Monica based firm [Studio Collective] have recently completed work on The Spare Room cocktail lounge, one of Hollywood’s latest entertainment destinations located at the mezzanine level of the Roosevelt Hotel. The lounge opened in early 2011, and has since been featured in magazines and city blogs including Vogue, LA Weekly,, and among others. The firm has also completed hospitality projects for SBE Entertainment, Thompson Hotels, and several concept retail designs for Quicksilver—including the brand’s promenade flagship store in Santa Monica. Currently, Goldstein and Schultz are developing a 3,000-square-foot penthouse design for the Roosevelt Hotel, as well as an ocean-view restaurant in Malibu, a nightclub in Kansas City and private residences in San Marino, Hollywood Hills and Manhattan Beach. In 2010, Schultz was a guest on KCRW’s DNA show with Frances Anderton, and Goldstein received a “Wave of the Future Award” from Hospitality Design. [Studio Collective] was founded in 2009 by Goldstein, Schultz and partner Leslie Kale.

Ramsey Daham (M.Arch ’03), founder and owner of the design practice Breakform Design, was featured in Standard magazine’s 2010 Holiday Issue for their design and fabrication of a Santa Monica bar. Breakform’s recent work includes the installation of a glass pivot door as a security feature in a private residence.

Nerin Kadribegovic (M.Arch ’03) and his firm Lehrer Architects won the AIA 2011 Institute Honor Award for Interior Architecture for their design of the Registrar-Recorder County Clerk Elections Operations Center. Late 2010, the firm also received an AIA|LA Award of Merit for Jerry’s Place at Shalom Institute, for which Kadribegovic was project architect. As Director of Operations, he was also instrumental in establishing a partnership between Lehrer Architects and WRL to form a brand new firm, LAWRL Design, which features vertically integrated design with over 180 architects and engineers. In addition, after winning an international competition for designers under 35, with over 400 entries from 11 countries, Kadribegovic was invited to exhibit his newest furniture line at the 2011 Mixer Design Expo in Belgrade. He is a member of the AIA and serves on the SCI-Arc Alumni Council.

Brian Flaig (M.Arch ‘05), principal of Undisclosable, partnered with The Creators Project in bringing to the Coachella 2011 grounds a monumental interactive installation that embodies a collaboration between J. Spaceman of the beloved “space rock” band Spiritualized and acclaimed UK filmmaker Jonathan Glazer. Flaig designed a cathedral-like space with isolated pools of light each containing a different component of Spiritualized’s most famous track, “Ladies and Gentlemen, We Are Floating in Space.”

Fumio Hirakawa (M.Arch ’05) and Marina Topunova (M.Arch ’06), both partners of the New York-based practice 24° Studio, were among the international winners selected to build and show their design in the container exhibition hosted at the 2010 Toyko Design Week, following a competition organized by Design Association NPO of Japan and Dezeen UK. 24° Studio has locations in New York and Kobe, Japan.

Aaron Leppanen (M.Arch ’06) of Belzberg Architects in Santa Monica was Project Designer and Project Manager of the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust, completed in late 2010. The project was featured widely, including in articles published by the Los Angeles Times, The Huffington Post and ArchDaily.

Steven Purvis (M.Arch2 ‘06) exhibited his work alongside that of faculty member Wes Jones in the SOUPERgreen exhibition hosted in February at the A+D Museum in Los Angeles. The show featured five architectural propositions that explore the way in which technology can promote and enhance a far more constructive engagement between architecture and the environment. Purvis is principal of APLSD Design.

Ninaki Priddy (B.Arch ‘07) of Los Angeles launched her luxury jewelry collection Ninaki in late 2010. Her jewelry line was featured in the December 2010 issue of fashion magazine Marie Claire.

Michael Arellanes II (B.Arch ‘08) of MA2 appeared in Frame’s April/May 2011 issue for his design of the Taiwan Tower Competition. He is currently pursuing a M.Arch 2 degree at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP).


Robert Lisauskas (SCIFI ‘10) and Scott Plante (SCIFI ‘10), founders of Los Angeles-based Red Oxide, received 1st place for their competition entry rad, submitted to Cincinnati’s Five Design Challenge. The competition was aimed at improving Cincinnati’s urban core through the reimagination of its mass transit infrastructures.

Use the links below to browse our most recent alumni class notes:

FALL 2014


FALL 2013


FALL 2012


FALL 2011


FALL 2010