MSc in Architecture and Design
Elena Sophia Längle is a designer who currently lives and works in Vorarlberg, Austria. After completing her bachelor’s degree in architecture, she realized something was missing from the typical architectural education, such as a basic understanding of how humans perceive and interact with architecture. She then found the NewSchool of Architecture and Design in San Diego, which offered a Master’s degree in Architecture with a focus on neuroscience.
Elena has always been fascinated by light. While she lived in California, she wrote her Master’s thesis called “Experience of Light, the role of natural light in understanding architecture as a cinematic experience.” The thesis offered a strategy for helping architects to appreciate qualities of natural light and to foresee how future inhabitants will perceive light — and thus create positive experience.
After graduation, Elena worked part-time as a research assistant for Sergei Gephstein at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, and part-time in an architectural office. She presented her work at the AMPS Conference in Florida in 2019. In 2020 Elena returned to Austria, where her former University of Liechtenstein asked her to lecture on Architecture and Light. She took her students to Lech, a ski area in the Austrian Alps, the home to James Turrell’s “Skyspace.” As a guide of Lech's "Skyspace," she taught students about architecture and light, using "Skyspace" as a perfect place for appreciating qualities of light.
Driven by curiosity, Elena continues to explore the fields of architecture, psychology and design. Since Fall 2020 she joined ACE, where she assists Tatiana Berger and functions as a co-host during the conferences. ACE is a working group of architects, urban planners, designers, scientists, authors and educators interested in improving the built environment. Their goal is to facilitate global educational initiatives at the interface of human sciences and architecture, to share expertise, to provide outreach to schools of design, to develop and curate resources for educators and students.