Ilianna GinnisInterior Architect | Neurodiverse Designer | Disability Advocate | Ph.D. Candidate
Ilianna Ginnis is an Interior Architectural designer (Honours) and a current PhD Candidate within the Design Health Collab at Monash University, and a caregiver for persons with disability. Ilianna has experience within specialist schools as a caregiver and teacher’s assistant with many disability agencies, as well as personal lived experience as a sister. As an emerging designer, Ilianna is passionate about engagement, participation and the response we have to architecture and the interior, using a fusion of visual receptivity and useful purpose, both in the tangible and intangible sense. Ilianna prides herself on designing with consciousness, creating interventions that extend the ordinary intentions of architecture, multi-disciplinary as well as sensory design for people with neurodevelopmental disabilities, focusing on communication, specifically behavioural and non-verbal, to stimulate design processes. Currently, she is establishing interest in the field of empathetic architecture, architecture that aims to understand the need for diversity and functionality. Her aim is to achieve this through the exploration of the interior and exterior architecture, urbanism and policy with a fundamental focus on intellectual and neurodevelopmental disability. Her current PhD speculates on how design processes begin to consider persons with severe and profound intellectual disability and non-verbal communication, allowing designers to integrate users into complex processes as narrators of their own experience, as well as enabling representation within the design, eliminating possible marginalisation, offering agency to persons with intellectual disability.