So what did we know about dementia? Not enough; not yet. Certainly not enough to attempt to represent the experience of it: yet we shared our stories of dementia with the urgency that often characterises conversations around the condition. We all wanted to understand more, so we shared what we each knew and talked about the experience of dementia each of us has had. Níall told us about conversations he has had with various people over the years about spatial cognition, architecture and Alzheimer’s. He described the Alzheimer’s Respite Centre in Dublin to us: what architectural moves had been made and why.
We tried to concepualise the consciousness of someone whose spatial experience is altered by dementia. We imagined a fragmented, layered, complex world; by turns comfortable and confusing. We discussed art, and the Angelus; Miro and memories; time, and how to represent it in space.
We also discussed how we could come to know more: the people we wanted to meet and the questions to ask them. We finished the meeting full of ideas and aspirations: daunted and exhilarated by the task at hand.
As much as we are excited about this project, we would like our research and all of the work to reach a wider audience given the prevalence of this condition and the reality of how many people it affects. Therefore, our intention is to use this ‘Diary’ as a platform for publishing our process on an on-going basis, including our successes and failures along the way.