Mind-Body Architecture

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Screen Shot 2013-07-16 at 16.58.37Mind-Body Architecture, Toronto (Canada), 2011

Carleton University

The project seeks to contribute to a broader discussion about how architecture can affect our emotional state and particularly the well being of patients in health care facilities, where dementia spectrum illnesses are treated. The medical field has acknowledged in recent years the importance of a patient’s emotional well-being and the effects of stress on healing processes, linking this with the surrounding environment. This field has been defined by medical scientist as mind-body medicine.

Abducting this medical concept into the field of architecture, the student’s design work uncovers the possibility for a notion of mind-body architecture. Their interest lays in discovering how can architectural materials and elements, details and space define our sense of place, providing comfort and care for the residents.

These design proposals are speculative in nature, yet have a potential for actual realisation through experimental implementation in various facilities, from remodelling, substituting one detail for another, to new construction. The aim is to challenge current standards and the implementation of ordinary details into unique places with specific needs, suggesting the possibility and the need for well-constructed details that flexibly respond to multiple design issues in an elegant and sustainable way.

The master students of the Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism have sought and engaged into an active dialogue with the scientific community and the specialists working at Cummer Lodge in Toronto. The generous support of the medical staff and the students’ thoughtful considerations about the medical conditions of the residents have made this work possible.

Client: Cummer Lodge facility & staff

Professor: Federica Goffi

Students: Steph Bolduc, Reguina Chakirova, Shaun Coombes, Angella Hercules Stevenson, Narae Kim, Anna Kourkounakis, Melanie Lee, Maysan Mamoun, Francisco D.S. Panzo, James Strachan, Katya Tchouprikova, Emily Webster Mason, Natalia Woldarsky Meneses.

Research Question: How can architectural materials and elements, details and space define our sense of place, providing comfort and care for the residents?

Link: Project PDF


+, 11-50, Analytical, Architecture, Carleton Univ., Curricular, Initiated by institution, Months, Postgraduate, Propositional, Self-funded, Students with tutor, Toronto