Tag Archives: Panel Discussion

Student Expo Next Week!


Please join us for this year’s LA City Center Student Design Expo on Thursday, March 7th. AECOM has generously offered to host this event again at their DTLA office.


The Student Design Expo is a unique opportunity for aspiring design professionals to showcase their work and network with tenured industry leaders. Students will have the platform to discuss their selected project in front of a panel of judges comprised of IIDA Board Members. This year, awards will be given for Best in Show and People’s Choice. Following the student presentations, a panel of recognized industry professionals will address the audience to discuss their career paths, industry experiences, and much more. The esteemed group of panelists this year includes:

Pam Light, Senior Principal/Regional Leader of Workplace, HOK

James Merchant, Senior Interior Designer, AECOM

Josie Park, Design Project Manager, NBC Universal

Gillian Sutton, Senior Project Manager, Newmark

Moderated by Amy Hill, Founder + Workplace Consultant, Work Thread

This event is open to both IIDA members and non-members. For additional event information and to purchase tickets, check out the event page here. See you on the 7th!

LA City Center Student Design Expo


The LA City Center Student Design Expo brought together students and design professionals for an engaging Thursday evening on November 15th. AECOM graciously hosted this event in their stunning DTLA office. The students and recent graduates shared impressive work and confirmed that the future of design is pushing boundaries and is as exciting as ever.

Click here to see more photos of the event.


We were lucky to have the IIDA SoCal Vice Presidents of Student Affairs, Jessica Collins with HOK and Edgardo Caceras with Gensler, judge the students’ work. Each student presented their work to the duo and after much deliberation, they awarded the following prizes:

First Place
Wei Qiu (Otis)

People’s Choice
Billie Herwig (UCLA)

Honorable Mentions
Chris Ko (CSULB)
Sanya Jain (UCLA)

Congratulations to the winners and all of the participants for sharing their incredible work!


Next in the evening was the panel discussion. Amanda Kaleps with Wolcott Architecture | Interiors moderated the discussion. The discussion highlighted various aspects of the design world like developing a personal brand, the future of design, and evolving in the industry. The distinguished panel included:

Sarah Devine | AECOM

Barbara Dunn | Gensler

Ryan Saghian | Ryan Saghian Interiors

Riz Walker | Omgivning     

This event would not have been possible without the support from the event sponsors, Strategic Furniture Group, Crossville, and Tangram. Also, the evening was made extra special by the creative drink bar sponsored by Steelcase and the delicious appetizers sponsored by EEi Project Management. Thank you to our generous sponsors for their support of the students in our design community and all of IIDA SoCal.

Finally, thank you to all of the LA City Center volunteers for their tremendous effort in organizing a great event and all of the students and design professionals who joined us for this event. 

Event Chair:
Jillian Hensiek

Event Volunteers:
Megan Jobe, Marcy Paterik, Megan Zell, Sheila Shenasi, Brian Schaller, and Andrea Amondson.

Event Sponsors:
Strategic Furniture Group

Food Sponsor:
EEi Project Management

Bar Sponsor:

All the best and happy holidays!

Jason Shepley and Ali Dahl
LA City Center Co-Chairs

Los Angeles Salon Event – Meet the Panelists

Join the LA City Center of IIDA for the Second Event in a series of engaging Salon discussions on the topic of Provenance.

Throughout history, design revolution correlates with the introduction of a new technology. Today, technology is shaping ideation and inspiration, not only end products. Our “Information Age” hazily sights its sources, (re) tweets / (re) grams / (re) pins, and depends upon the past successes of our forerunners. Has this made originality outdated? Do we even need to come up with original thought if we can imitate or revise (v3.0)? Will we recognize the source being imitated (v2.0)? What about v1.0?

Is provenance passé? Does it matter? Should we care?

We will be discussing originality, recombinant culture and design inspiration with the following guests:


Chris Adamick
Environmental Design
Chris Adamick Design

Chris designs environments, furniture, and products. He has worked with leading brands including Gap, Haworth, Bernhardt Design, and Allsteel. His work has been exhibited internationally onally and received the Architizer A+ Award, the Good Design Award from the Chicago Athenaeum, the Best of Year Award from Interior Design Magazine, and recognition from the Type Directors Club of New York (TDC) and the Society for Environmental Graphic Design (SEGD). In addition to holding design leadership roles with independent consultancies Pentagram and Rios Clementi Hale Studios, Chris has been an instructor at Art Center College of Design and has worked in-house with the iconic American clothing brand, Gap to lead the creation on of new store environments.


Matthew Bowers
Partner & Creative Director

Matthew hew graduated Cum Laude with a degree in Studio Art and French from College of Charleston. Throughout college, he nurtured his interest and freelance business in graphic design and web development. He moved to Los Angeles in 2010 to establish Manufactur while continuing to develop projects in entertainment and hospitality working with notable brands such as Capitol Records, Sony Music, 20th Century Fox Film and Walt Disney Parks & Resorts. Matthew also spends time working a on number of personal design, art, and technology projects as well as exploring the beautiful natural landscapes of California. Manufactur is a creative agency that offers web development, branding, design, marketing, and media services.


Karine Prot
Fashion Archivist
Independent Consultant

Karine has a Bachelor’s degree in Art History from the College of William and Mary and a Master’s Degree in Costume Studies from New York University. She has curated gallery shows in Los Angeles and New York that investigate wedding traditions, Japanese fashion influence and film costuming. She assisted in the presentation of an exhibition on Giorgio Armani at the Guggenheim. She also was a research assistant to the Guest Curator Hamish Bowles for “Jacqueline Kennedy: the White house Years” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. She most recently has been an Archives Manager for a Private Los Angeles collection of costume, media and ephemera items, including items loaned for special exhibitions at FIDM, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, the PDC, the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Swarovski Showroom.


Lorenzo Quinn
proDJ & Music Designer
Some Nice Musik

Lorenzo has played underground house clubs since the very beginning. He has opened for legendary House Music DJs like

David Morales, Robert Owens and Louie Vegas. He also was a part of the Catch One Disco DJ circuit, under the tutelage of DJ Billy Long. “The Catch”, since 1974, became known as the “Studio 54 of the West”, is the oldest African American owned club in America. A 2016 documentary about “The Catch” celebrates four decades of music, fashion, celebrity, and activism and was a safe space for both the LGBT and Black communities, serving as a refuge for many during the AIDS crisis. Lorenzo considers himself to be a “music designer”: when he spins for an event, he creates a musical environment or takes the listener on a musical voyage, his selections and mixes tell a story and create a palpable experience.

Join us and your fellow design community colleagues for this thought provoking evening.

Creating Place Panel Discussion

On March 24th, IIDA LA will be hosting a panel discussion event on the topic of “Creating Place”.  As interior designers, we are tasked with “creating place” for our clients. We have a “toolbox” from which we draw elements to create places with specific functions and feelings. How do others in similar disciplines create place? What can we learn from them?

The LA City Center is thrilled to host the following panelists:


Erica Gibson, Senior Art Director, Bottega Louie

Los Angeles-based designer Erica Gibson is the senior art director for Bottega Louie. Erica received her BA in Communication Arts from OTIS College of Art and Design in 2009, after which she traveled to Italy and Amsterdam for design residencies. Prior to her work with Bottega Louie, Erica held design positions at Joe’s Jeans and Clare Vivier. She produces work as an illustrator and painter and has exhibited in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and New York. Most recently, Erica has been featured as a guest lecturer at OTIS and Art Center, and won the Judge’s Choice award at Adobe Creative Jams’ Los Angeles event.


Ellen Brill, Set Decorator, American Horror Story

After many years in the fashion business, Ellen Brill enrolled in the UCLA Interior Design Program. During the four-year program, she worked with several interior designers, shopping and learning the business. Color and materials were of particular interest. After completing her studies in 1991, she interned in the art department of an independent film. Within the first week, she became the set decorator. At the completion of the film, she was presented another set decoration job. Ellen has been a set decorator on feature films and television ever since.

Ellen has been nominated for eight Emmys: The pilot episode of the hit drama 24, the pilot for comedy Arrested Development, the third season of Nip/Tuck as well as five nominations for the mini-series American Horror Story.

She has been the Set Decorator for four seasons of American Horror Story: Murder House, Asylum, Coven and Hotel. She, along with the Production Designer, won the Art Directors Guild Award for Excellence in Production Design for AHS Coven and won an ADG Award for AHS Hotel.


Joe Coriaty, AIA, Partner in Charge, Frederick Fisher and Partners

For over thirty years, Joseph Coriaty has dedicated his career to creating buildings that integrate design excellence and place-making with 21st century technologies. His working process has elevated the architects’ role as “maker” and community leader.  Joe joined Frederick Fisher and Partners in 1988, and is currently the Partner-in-Charge for the firm’s academic, civic, live-work and community-oriented projects. Joe inspires team members, clients, and the community-at-large with timeless designs that are reflective, elegant, and create a strong sense of place. In each city, town, neighborhood, and design solution, Joe recognizes the instinctive need for individuals to feel a sense of belonging. His ability to incorporate key programmatic and communal elements that focuses on the client, and not the signature of the architect, is unique. This fundamental reality is often missing from the design of buildings and communities today.

While his designs do not brand themselves as “iconic”, his ability to create extraordinary buildings that reflect the site, current technologies, and community, is the kind of serious work that we need to create to make people’s lives more fulfilling through the built environment.


Mark Worthington, Production Designer, American Horror Story

Mark Worthington is an Emmy Award-nominated production designer. His art director credits include all four seasons of FX Networks’ American Horror Story (2011-2015); the pilots for CBS’Battle Creek (2015) and Fox’s Backstrom (2015); USA’s Political Animals (2012); all four seasons of ABC’s Ugly Betty (2006–2010) as well as the pilots for the network’s Once Upon a Time (2011) and Lost (2004). His film credits include Legally Blonde 2: Red, White and Blonde (2003); Austin Powers in Goldmember (2002); Hearts in Atlantis (2001); Town & Country (2001); U.S. Marshals (1998); Wag the Dog (1997); The Chamber (1996) and Tombstone (1993).

Worthington is a five-time Emmy Award nominee for his work on American Horror Story and Ugly Betty. Additionally, he is a nine-time Art Directors Guild Awards nominee. He has taken home the prize three times.

Worthington holds a B.A. from Reed College in theatre and an M.F.A. in set design from Carnegie Mellon University.


Scott Johnson, CID . IALD . IIDA . LEED AP, Principal, Wolcott

Scott Johnson brings a cross-disciplinary narrative to the design profession. Known throughout the design community, he is an award-winning designer whose work spans theatre (Tony nominee), television (Emmy nominee), lighting design (LumenWest Awards) and interior design (Calibre Award); a valued mentor to emerging design professionals; a frequent juror for design competitions and exhibitions; and a speaker, lecturer and panelist. Scott served as the 2012-13 IIDA SoCal President. He is Design Principal of both Wolcott Architecture Interiors and of Brilliant Lighting Studio.

5:30 – 8:00pm
Haworth Showroom DTLA
444 South Flower St., Suite 4800, Los Angeles, CA 90071

IIDA Members and all Students – $10
Non-Members – $25
All tickets at the door will be $35

Almost SOLD OUT! NO TICKETS will be sold AT THE DOOR.

Due to limited parking, self-parking is available next door @ 400 South Flower-cost may vary. Convenient to Metro Red Line at 7th and Metro