the adoro collection
Judith Ripka by Elena Manferdini
Architect Elena Manferdini’s mastery of form and pattern creates an extraordinary moment at Judith Ripka with the limited-edition Adoro collection. Her exclusive collection for Judith Ripka is the first in our series with women artists and designers, setting the tone for a groundbreaking, multidisciplinary look at jewelry’s expressive potential.
"JEWELRY IS A UNIVERSAL FORM OF ADORNMENT AND HAS BEEN A PART OF MANKIND SINCE BEFORE HISTORY WAS WRITTEN"
IN CONVERSATION WITH ELENA MANFERDINI
What was your inspiration when designing this collection?
Architecture and geometry patterns played a major role in designing the Adoro Collection for Judith Ripka. The interplay of fluid lines and ordering systems lends to varied and aesthetically balanced interpretations in jewelry and has allowed us to create and bring to life our innovative designs.
How did growing up in Italy influence your creativity?
Although I have been living and working in Los Angeles since 1997, there are certain aspects of my artistic production that are inherently Italian, for instance, my interest in the relationship to pictorial canvases and facades, my proclivities towards functional art, my inclination to search for a sense of order within a complex geometrical composition. In addition to that, the production of Atelier Manferdini embraces the philosophy that design can participate in a wide range of multidisciplinary developments that define our culture. The idea that all arts are intrinsically connected derives from Italian culture, that considers the architect as a person that could and would design at all scales.
What drew you to architecture? What was your journey?
In 1997 I left Italy as an exchange student with a scholarship from the UCLA Engineering department, and attended a few Architecture classes. I immediately realized I loved the creativity and visual techniques of architecture. During those years at UCLA I completed both degrees in engineering and architecture. After my master’s degree in architecture I moved to work as a designer in an architectural firm and subsequently opened my own office.
What was the first piece of architecture or design that had an impact on you?
I grew up in Bologna, an Italian city that even today preserves its medieval characteristics. The city is a complex fabric of layered facades, deep arcades, leaning towers and unfinished churches. Rare artifacts and books, exuberant frescoes, contemporary equipment, ubiquitous computers, statues and museum vitrines are the eclectic background to everyday activities. Looking back, it has been a privilege being able to grow up immersed in a rich visual and material culture of buildings that for centuries shaped our public and private lives.
How do you view the relationship between architecture and jewelry?
When it comes to aesthetic and the psychology of looking, there is a universal human impulse to seek ordering patterns within a complex context. One could argue that mankind has long been fascinated with geometry’s ability to express a sense of spatial rhythm and balance we often describe as beautiful. Therefore, it is not surprising that architecture and jewelry share an area of overlap, as both fields display a passion for geometrical ordering systems as an armature for design, are devoted to form making and detailing, and keep in high value aesthetics and material durability. Not to mention that both design fields departure from the human body to define their measuring compass.