Losing Myself, a collaborative exhibition by Níall McLaughlin and Yeoryia Manolopoulou, will be presented at the Ireland Pavilion at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale. Focusing on Alzheimer's Disease, the exhibition highlights the process of “designing and revisiting buildings for people who have dementia.” The exhibit contains two main components: a website that arranges a series of drawings, stories, and research on dementia; and an installation in the pavilion, which contains drawings that explore a building designed for people with dementia.
The installation allows visitors to experience the Alzheimer’s Respite Center in Dublin, Ireland as it is experienced by patients and their caregivers. Since patients don’t have the ability to situate and navigate themselves throughout the building, they lack the ability to understand and remember architectural spaces and processions. The installation uses time-based projection to draw the navigating experience of sixteen patients during a single day. The effect of dementia on an architect’s fixed plan “produces a fragmentary world; and, because there is still recourse to deep memory, a world that is filled with a phantasmagoric and unbidden procession of other spaces and times.”
The website, www.losingmyself.ie, serves as a documentation of conversations with experts across a range of fields involved with patients, as well as family and friends of those with dementia. These interactions are useful to architects and scientists alike. The site also records how this research formed the immersive installation.
Ireland at Venice is an initiative of Culture Ireland in partnership with the Arts Council.