An artist, a design-oriented visionary, a fearless and intensely entrepreneurial woman fascinated by machinery and unchallenged by technology or natural disaster, Milena Nikiforova-Marguenski combines her education, talent and expertise in creating her 3D Artistic Walls, custom furniture and decorative elements.
Milena’s studio is in Staten Island, N.Y. After 15 years in the U.S., she has achieved prominence as an interior designer in the tri-state area. Previously she directed the graphic design department for Printing for U, Brooklyn, N.Y. In 2006, The American Institute of Graphic Arts [AIGA] recognized collateral that she designed.
She continues to run MNM Design Studio, the design business she founded in 2001, out of a 2,800 square foot showroom where she also sketches her distinctive 3D Artistic Walls and furniture. She fabricates the pieces using a digital modeling unit, laser cutting and refinishing tools.
Her 3D Artistic Walls and furniture evolved naturally from her design and remodeling projects. Art has been her mainstay since she initially took drawing lessons at age eight. Her Bulgarian roots also impact her passion for wood and carving: The country’s artisans are recognized for wood artisanship.
In seventh grade she visited Tryavna, a small mountain town with historic houses embellished with traditional Bulgarian woodcarving. This trip first inspired her lifelong love for the art and material. She imagines that she might be related to one of that region’s most renowned 19th century woodcarvers, Gencho Marangozov, who was born in the same small Macedonian town as her grandmother.
As a young adult in Varna on the Black Sea where she grew up she founded Capricorn, the first private applied arts gallery in the city. She owned a printing and advertising business in Bulgaria as well. Today, wood is her medium of choice and wood tones her preferred palette for 3D Artistic Walls and the furniture she designs. She also works seamlessly with virtually any material.
Now fluent, she spoke no English when she came to the U.S. She also speaks Russian. She received a Master of Science in mechanical engineering from the Technical University of Varna and studied economics and business administration for three years at Bulgarian University, Sofia. She also earned graphic design certificates for Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Corel Draw and Quark Express from Brainbench and is a member of the International Interior Design Association.
The art director of the May 2014 Contemporary Art Fair NYC selected her show-stopping 15’ x 8’ sculpted wall, “Fantasy Love II,” to promote the art fair in direct marketing materials.
Milena lives in Staten Island with her husband and two children. They were the subject of a Columbia University Journalism Masters degree thesis, “Reviving the Homestead: The Post-Storm Struggle of a Sandy-Affected Family.” In reviewing her work a client noted that although her home was devastated by the hurricane, she was never late for an appointment.