Rio De Janeiro


Dates tbc

The Sambadromo is a 700m-long, 13m-wide purpose-built linear stadium designed by Oscar Niemeyer and constructed specifically to host the annual parade of Samba Schools during the Carnival festival. For the remaining 361 days of the year it stands empty and desolate as a massive dividing wall within its degraded urban context. Renovated in 2012 and now the future site for the 2016 Olympic marathon finish line and archery events, as well as the impromptu campground for Argentinian football fans at the World Cup final, the Sambadromo is receiving renewed international attention, but it drastically needs to accommodate new types of programme and improve its connection with its surrounding context. AAVS Rio de Janeiro will explore ways to intervene within and transform the Sambadromo. The teaching team will be led by Elena Manferdini to teach and use advanced digital design and fabrication to generate iterative transformations in the creation of new micro-infrastructures.

Computational and fabrication skills 

The workshop will teach advanced computational design skills. A series of physical models will be built using digital fabrication techniques, such as laser-cutting and rapid-prototyping, that will be taught during the workshop. No previous digital or fabrication experience is needed.


1) You can make an application by completing the online application found under ‘Links and Downloads’ on the AA Visiting School page. If you are not able to make an online application, email for instructions to pay by bank transfer. 

2) Once you complete the online application and make a full payment, you are registered to the programme. A CV or a portfolio is not required.

The deadline for applications itbc

All participants travelling from abroad are responsible for securing any visa required, and are advised to contact their home embassy early. After payment of fees, the AA School can provide a letter confirming participation in the workshop.


Centro Carioca de Design
Praça Tiradentes, 48
Rio de Janeiro – RJ, 20060-070


The AA Visiting School requires a fee of £695 per participant, which includes a £60 Visiting membership fee. If you wish to enhance your membership, a Subscribing Membership is available at an additional £70 (£130 in total), full details of which can be found at:

Fees do not include flights or accommodation, but accommodation options can be advised. Students need to bring their own laptops, digital equipment and model making tools. Please ensure this equipment is covered by your own insurance as the AA takes no responsibility for items lost or stolen at the workshop.


The workshop is open to current architecture and design students, phd candidates and young professionals.


Franklin Lee and Anne Save de Beaurecueil are directors of SUBdV (, using a mixture of high and low design technologies to generate socially and environmentally responsive geometries for architecture and urban design projects. They were AA Diploma Unit 2 Masters from 2005 to 2010 and taught at the Pratt Institute and Columbia University in New York, from where they both also received Master’s degrees. They have published, exhibited and lectured about their work worldwide.

Teaching team

Elena Manferdini, principal and owner of Atelier Manferdini, ( has over fifteen years of professional experience in architecture, art, design, and education. She is a licensed engineer in Italy, and a licensed architect in Switzerland. She received a Professional Engineering Degree from the University of Civil Engineering (Bologna, Italy) and a Master of Architecture and Urban Design from the University of California in Los Angeles (UCLA).

Atelier Manferdini has completed art and architectural projects in the US, Europe and Asia. Notable among the firm’s projects are the Pavilion for the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, Bianca, a three stories boat in Japan, and a series of interior design renovations in Los Angeles. Elena Manferdini’s work has appeared internationally in books, professional journals and reviews. She has been featured in several publications: Domus, New York Times, Elle, Vogue, ID, Icon, Form, Contemporary, Metropolis, and Architectural Design are selected examples. In 2013 a monograph on the firm’s work "Elena Manferdini" was published by Equalbooks.

Elena currently teaches at the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) and is the coordinator of their Graduate Thesis program. She frequently lectures, and her work has been exhibited internationally in both architecture and art museums. Selected examples are LACMA and MOCA in Los Angeles, MAXXI in Rome, MAK center in Vienna. In 2006 Ms. Manferdini was invited to design the West Coast Pavilion representing the USA at the Beijing Biennale in the Chinese Millennium Museum. In 2008 and 2010, she curated the West Coast USA session of the Beijing Biennale exhibition. She has lectured widely, including at MIT, Princeton, GSD, UCLA, USC, UIC, UCB, Seika University, Tsinghua University and Bauhaus.


CENTRO CARIOCA DE DESIGN, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (U.F.R.J.) and Pimpolhos of Grande Rio School of Samba.


Programme Director
Franklin Lee
Anne Save de Beaurecueil

Visiting School Director

Christopher Pierce

T +44 20 7887 4014
F +44 20 7414 0782

Links & Downloads

Programme site


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Visiting School Prospectus