This free exhibition is part of the London Festival of Architecture 2017 and will be taking place in our Chapel on Friday 16th June from 5pm to 8pm and on Saturday 17th June from 12pm to 6pm.
In 2016, dementia became the leading cause of death in the UK and it is estimated that, by 2050, 2 million people will be living with the disease. The risk of dementia increases exponentially over the age of 65 so that, with Europe’s ageing population, dementia is set to pose significant challenges to our economies, healthcare systems, and care structures.
The most common form of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease. Accounting for 60-70% of cases, Alzheimer’s disease originates in the hippocampus, an area of the brain responsible for both memory and the mapping of space. As such, patients often require specialised settings that respond to neurodegenerative disorientation. However, no such structures exist that could cater for the future dementia population.
Currently, almost all existing care-home typologies — despite wide-ranging internal variations — are based upon segregative structures. Frequently isolated, these typologies are not only unsustainable economically but often exacerbate neurodegeneration. As such, there is an urgent need to urbanise and integrate care solutions — to develop dementia friendly architecture within the metropolitan context.
Project ‘Ellipsis’ envisages an integrated district of neurodegenerative friendly architecture within the city of London. The result of collaborative research with the Cambridge Design Research Studio, SCA Cambridge, and the Cambridge institute of Neurology, the 2017 LFA installation constitutes a distinctly interdisciplinary approach to dementia. Using projectors to display interactive, imagined routes through the city we ask visitors to test their spatial memory and solve the Ellipsis maze. Your participation will not only help towards a better understanding of how we navigate space but also may suggest new ways of designing for dementia within the city.