Studio BWA is a group of young, passionate architects that view architecture through the lens of appreciation. Our studio believes that design should be affected by landscape and environment in order to enhance the connection of user and building. Space has the power to uplift the human spirit and provide positive change to communities.
We are completely dedicated to our clients, communities and to designing spaces we believe in. This studio values the iterative process of design and the important role that clients, consultants, contractors and communities play in the creation of a built structure.
Rooted in place, architecture should be informed by the past but transcend time. It should foster partnerships within communities and bring people together. It must evoke a sense of excitement and heighten one's experience through the physical world.
Carina Bien-Willner, Principal AIA NCARB
A creative spirit and a passionate leader, Carina has developed her life-long love affair with design from an early age. Born to two architect-parents in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Carina was brought up in an environment of design, as much of her childhood and early adult life was spent in her parents’ custom furniture shop, designing, building and working directly with clients.
Carina’s design expertise and love for architecture has led her to a successful professional career, which encompasses award-winning high-end residential as well as commercial and institutional projects, most notably, the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust, where she managed both design and construction.
Her experience over the past decade has allowed her to thrive as an architect and an ingenious designer. In 2010, she founded her own practice, with a determination to establish a firm that operates on transparency, collaboration, cutting edge modern and sustainable design, responsibility to community and client needs (as well as consultants and building departments), and to provide excellent design and construction administration services.
Carina holds a license in the states of California and Arizona and received her Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Arizona College of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture where she was awarded the Alpha Ro Chi award for leadership, service and professional merit.
Ilanit Maghen, Architect
With a discerning eye for detail, creative background and a deep appreciation for design, Ilanit has worked on a variety of projects from high-end residential to hospitality venues throughout her education and professional career. She has proven to be an invaluable asset in each project, one that integrates design sensibility and passion. Ilanit seeks to inspire others through space and continuously searches for inspiration not only through great design but also through cultivating relationships, travel, music and her favorite – dance!
Born and raised in Bat-Yam, Israel, Ilanit was exposed to art and design at an early age, as both her parents are professionals in the fashion world. At the age of 12, Ilanit and her family moved to Los Angeles where she developed her passion for architecture. At the end of her high school education, she had begun to explorer the architectural world by starting a yearlong internship.
When she realized it was indeed her calling, she attended the University of Southern California and earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture at the top of her class in 2009. While studying, she traveled to Italy for a semester where she was able to live in Como and work in Milan, thus gaining an invaluable experience and contribution to her architectural career. Ilanit holds a license in the state of California.
Daniela Arriagada, Project Manager
From a childhood obsession with art and making, Daniela has developed a strong aesthetic sensibility and a passion for design. Born in Santiago, Chile, Daniela was always involved in creative affairs, from dance and theater to art and sculpture. Her family relocated to Miami in her early teenage years, where her passion for art refocused into industrial design and architecture. After some professional experience in the construction field, she realized that architecture was her future and she moved to Los Angeles to attend the Southern California Institute of Architecture. The city has become a great source of inspiration, breathing new life into her design intuitions and strengthening her creativity.
Throughout her professional and academic career, she has worked on various projects from high density residential to high-profile cultural institutions, including urban and parametric design. Through innovative use of material and technology, her goal is to create spaces that are not only functional, but beautiful and inspiring.
She earned her Bachelor's of Architecture Degree from SCI-Arc in June 2013, where she was awarded the Alpha Ro Chi award for leadership, service and professional merit, as well as Graduation with Distinction. She was awarded a scholarship from the Association of Women in Architecture and Design Foundation and her thesis project was selected for SCI-Arc's 40th Anniversary Exhibition.
Melody Hsu, Designer
Growing up with a love for art and dance, Melody has always been interested in the creative field. Raised by a traveling parent, she was exposed to all different cities across the US starting from the age of nine. Her experiences ignited an interest in architecture stemming from the vibrant cities she visited, from New York to New Orleans to Hong Kong.
Throughout her professional and academic career, she has worked on various projects from workplace to high-end residential. Melody believes in a constant exploration of material and process, finding smart solutions to create complexity through simplicity.
She earned her Bachelor's of Architecture Degree from the University of Southern California in May 2016 and her thesis project was featured on the front page of the USC website. While studying abroad in Rome, Italy, she participated as part of the USC team in a competition hosted by the Maxxi Museum, gaining new insight on international architecture. When she's not busy at her desk, you can find her eating her way through Los Angeles, camping somewhere in the woods or along the coast, or taking a dance class and letting her funk out.