Umberto Riva was born in Milan in 1928. He is best known for the breadth of his design work, with projects that address urban spaces, architecture, landscaping, interior design, and product design. He studied architecture in Venice under Carlo Scarpa. His work often paid particular attention to the experience of a space or a product rather than adhering to the tenants of classical architecture or design principles. Design influences include Scarpa, Frank Lloyd Wright and American Craftsman Style as a whole, with particular impact coming from the designs of the 1930s. Awards and accolades for Riva include being named a Fellow of the Accademia di San Luca, and receiving the Gold Medal for Italian Architecture by the Triennale di Milano in 2003.