For the Wellcome Collection’s Bedlam exhibition, we collaborated on the latest iteration of the Madlove project – an imaginative exploration of the potential for user driven design in mental health care environments



Wellcome Collection / 2016

Projects Office have continued our collaboration with designer and researcher Benjamin Koslowski and artists the vacuum cleaner and Hannah Hull to develop the next iteration of the Madlove project.

Building on the success of the project’s beta version at FACT, Liverpool the artists have continued their tour of the UK and several European locations - developing ideas in collaboration with mental health service users, professionals, family members and carers. This body of research has been utilised to formulate a series of spatial conditions for a wilfully utopian landscape of good mental health. On display at The Wellcome Collection in London, the Madlove exhibit forms the climax of the Bedlam exhibition. This provocative show charts changing attitudes to mental health through the lens of Bethlem Hospital - from the birth of the asylum to the current and complex landscape of mental health.

Our contribution takes the form of a large architectural model that proposes a landscape approach to the design of mental health care environments. Its topography mixes mutual care, self-led activity, individualised support and communal creation. The diversity of spatial conditions and privacy levels enables opportunities to connect or retreat, play or plan, distract or discuss – all in accordance with individual daily desires.

The model is exhibited alongside illustrations by Rosemary Cunningham describing Madlove’s collaborative process together with an insight into the potential daily lives of future users. The exhibition runs between the 15th of September 2016 and the 15th of January 2017.