Professor and Vice Chair


Neil Denari is principal of NMDA, Neil M. Denari Architects Inc. After graduate school, Denari interned at Aerospatiale’ Helicoptres in Paris and later moved to New York, where from 1983-86, he worked for James Stewart Polshek and Partners. While in New York, he exhibited his own research work at the Cooper Hewitt, Storefront, P.S. 1, and the Architectural League. In 1986, he began his teaching career at Columbia University. In 1988, he moved to Los Angeles where his office is based today.

He is the recipient of the Los Angeles AIA Gold Medal in 2011 and in 2010, Denari was inducted into the Interior Design Hall of Fame. In 2009, he was given the California Community Foundation Fellowship from the United States Artists organization and in 2008 he received an Architecture Award from the American Academy of Arts & Letters. His work has been included in exhibitions, including the solo shows Fast Forward in 2008 at the Museum of the City of New York, Architects’ Work: HL23 in 2009 at Syracuse University, and The Artless Drawing in 2010 at Ace Gallery Los Angeles, and in 2013, he was included in the New Sculpturalism at MOCA Los Angeles.  His work is included in the permanent collection of eight major museums around the world.

With NMDA, Denari works on building projects in North America, Europe and Asia. In 2012, NMDA won first prize in the New Keelung Harbor Service Building competition, a building set to enter construction in Fall 2014. NMDA have also recently won the commission for the Wildwood Middle and Upper School campus in Los Angeles.

Denari lectures worldwide and has been a Visiting Professor at Harvard, Princeton, Columbia, and UC Berkeley among other schools and was the Director of SCI-Arc from 1997-2002.  He is the author of Interrupted Projections (1996), Gyroscopic Horizons (1999), and Mass X, an 850-page multigraph forthcoming in 2014 and director/editor of Megavoids, to be published by the A.UD in 2014.



M.Arch., Harvard
B.Arch., University of Houston




2011 AIA/Los Angeles Gold Medal

2010 Interior Design Hall of Fame

2009 California Community Foundation Fellowship, the United States Artists

2008 Architecture Award, American Academy of Arts & Letters

2007 National American Institute of Architecture Award

2005 National American Institute of Architecture Award

2005 Progressive Architecture Citation

2006 American Institute of Architecture/Los Angeles Honor Award

2004 American Institute of Architecture/Los Angeles Honor Award