Interiority of a Disconnected Mind
As the population of New Zealand ages, the rate of people with dementia is also increasing, creating greater demand for specialised dementia facilities. However, few of these are located in the rural context that New Zealand is known for. In addition, as a society we have created a stigma around aged care, and tend to design un-home-like and institutional centres. The importance of creating a space that provides contextual features, appropriate wayfinding and therapeutic characteristics has been overtaken by the need to design for efficiency of staffing requirements. Current settings and the relocation to a more urban living environment increases the confusion for those rural people with dementia, as there is little to prompt their memory or make them feel at home. This thesis proposes the design of a dementia care facility that reflects the lifestyle rural people have come from. It examines how these three aspects: context, wayfinding and therapeutic design can be included to enhance the design of a dementia facility, as well as create a space that is enlivening for the residents.