Principal & Architect, AIA

“For me the architectural design process functions much like the natural world, where artistry, order and complexity find harmony.”

– David Balian

An innovator, leader and entrepreneur, David is driven to outperform on every project and promise. His work strives for elegant, minimal, and balanced solutions in a process founded in good will, sustainability, and invention. David is continuously innovating and revels in finding the right solutions.

A Registered Architect in California and Washington state, David has delivered top-tier architectural services for clients ranging from maverick developers to large educational and institutional entities. His years of experience in large-scale master planning and architectural design spans diverse markets including commercial, educational, institutional, residential, and hospitality projects. A graduate of the University of Southern California’s School of Architecture, David has earned numerous design awards. The City of Los Angeles awarded David’s design called “Densification Prototype” for the then newly envisioned Small Lot Subdivision Ordinance a First Place Runner Up Prize. David also exhibited his work at the 2010 Venice Italy Architectural Biennale showcasing his work in North America as a part of The National Museum-Institute of Architecture and the Pan-Armenian Association of Architects and Engineers.

David is a lifelong resident of Los Angeles who inspires to permeate his strong sense of family and community into the daily design practice at Balian Architects.

Principal & Architect, AIA

“My passion for architecture emerges from my life-long affinity for graphic and sculptural experimentation and from mastering the artistic articulation of ideas into physical form.”

– Magdalena Dzialo Balian

A lifelong creator, Magdalena finds joy in transforming ideas into reality. She brings leadership to the pursuit of beautiful tailored solutions and efficient project delivery. Her approach merges exploration and experimentation to create architectural innovations that consider construction methods and materials. Her ongoing obsession with evolving her craft and a deliberate approach to strategic planning bring a high level of clarity and coherence to the function and beauty of Balian’s projects.

Magdalena studied in Canada and Italy and lived and worked in Vancouver, B.C. and Toronto, Ontario, prior to obtaining her license to practice in California and co-founding Balian Architects Inc. Magdalena’s broad experience in the commercial sector includes projects in both the imperial and metric systems.

Magdalena aspires for her designs to become notable elements in the fabric of Los Angeles. She thrives on building community and bringing architecture to life through the collaborative team experience. When she’s not innovating, designing and mentoring at the office, she extends her curiosity, imagination and artistic touch at home through painting.


Ruzanna has always had a love for the arts and architecture. Graduating from art school as a teenager, she eventually decided to pursue architecture, finishing a degree from Polytechnic University for Architecture in Armenia. Her inspirations include Frank Lloyd wright, I.M. Pei, and Frank Gehry.

She particularly enjoys modern and industrial buildings. Ruzanna appreciates the benefits of working in a team-based environment, believing that great works are formed when people’s respective ideas intertwine. In her spare time, she enjoys painting and keeping up with current global architectural trends.


Andrew DerKrikorian, an aircraft design enthusiast, found his passion for architecture as he was able to incorporate the aerodynamics and structure into his architectural designs.

Andrew started his academic career at Woodbury University.  Throughout the years he improved on his design skills while paying close attention to fine details regarding structural and physical components. While studying a semester in Rome, Andrew started to incorporate the organic form and shapes along with the dynamic and geometric design to find balance and improve on design abilities. 

Andrews professional experience has consisted of both domestic and international work, with the majority revolving around Retail-Entertainment Centers, Hospitality and Mix-Use projects. Working with teams of 2 and up to 12 depending on a project, he’s always found it as an advantage to get different perspectives and put pieces together like a jigsaw puzzle.

Senior Associate

Jose has a broad experience in various architectural project types, sizes, and programs taking them from concept, planning, design, construction documentation, and construction administration. This range of experience has provided a unique and thorough design approach. His dual role as designer and project manager maximizes his influence on the project’s progress and quality. Project experience has included a variety of project types including Retail, Office, Hospitality, and Residential in Asia and the US.