The Bartlett


Inclusive Spaces: Deafening Architecture

26 April 2023, 1:00 pm–2:00 pm

Inclusive Spaces April event graphic

This online Inclusive Spaces event will explore the voices, experiences and designs of D/deaf creatives within architectural practice, pedagogy and research.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to







The Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment
“Thinking more explicitly about… Deaf people themselves, can split open our commonsense assumptions about how the world “normally” works, and make new opportunities for creating different kinds of designed spaces.” 
– Jos Boys, Doing Disability Differently (London: Routledge, 2014), p.1   

D/deafness is under-represented in architecture and built environment education, research and practice.  

The representation of deaf students, educators and professionals in the field continues to be small, and spatial scholarship still largely overlooks the multiple intersections of D/deafness and the built environment.   

In this online Inclusive Spaces event, we will explore the voices, experiences and designs of D/deaf creatives and highlight critical considerations of deafness within architectural practice, pedagogy and research.  

A panel of professionals, educators and scholars will discuss how design can be a catalyst for greater diversity and equity in society. 

We will explore the ways that university education can encourage collaboration between architecture students and D/deaf people and foreground the contribution of deaf practitioners in architectural histories to help us re-think the present and future of design.  

Led by The Bartlett Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) group, the Inclusive Spaces monthly series presents the latest ideas and research from The Bartlett’s leading thinkers in the built environment field. We explore disability, race, gender, LGBTQ+ and many other dimensions of diversity and discover how they intersect with built environments around the world.

Recording and accessibility

The session will be recorded, and the recording and written transcript will be shared with attendees after the event.

This event will be British Sign Language interpreted.  

We want to make our events accessible for everyone, and we encourage you to let us know if you have any further accessibility requirements including:

  • Presentation slides in advance for screen readers
  • Live closed captions during the event
  • Any other requirements

Please contact Alma Daskalaki, Bartlett Faculty Events Officer at a.daskalaki@ucl.ac.uk with accessibility requirements. Please note we require two working days' notice for requests.

About the Speakers

Dr Stylianos (Stelios) Giamarelos

Associate Professor in Architecture at The Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London (UCL)

Dr Stylianos (Stelios) Giamarelos is Associate Professor at The Bartlett School of Architecture, where he runs the ‘Histories of Disability and Neurodiversity in Architecture’ seminar in the final year of the BSc programme. In 2008, he co-curated the National Participation of Greece in the 11th Biennale of Architecture in Venice and co-edited the accompanying book ATHENS by SOUND (Athens: futura, 2008). His research and teaching practices are informed by his multi-disciplinary background in architecture engineering, architectural history and theory, and history and philosophy of science and technology. His latest book is Resisting Postmodern Architecture: Critical Regionalism before Globalisation (London: UCL Press, 2022).

More about Dr Stylianos (Stelios) Giamarelos

Richard Dougherty

Architect RIBA ARB and Director at Richard Lyndon Design

Richard Dougherty is currently a Director for Richard Lyndon Design – a multi-disciplinary collective with focus on working with Deaf/Disabled artists and architects on projects across Europe and America. Prior to that, he was an Associate Architect for an internationally renowned award-winning practice working on public and private sector projects. Richard is currently leading a new campus masterplan for the prestigious Gallaudet University for the Deaf in Washington D.C and several other projects across Europe.   

Richard has received the 2019 RSUA ‘Project Architect of the Year’ award for his work on the Transport Hub in Belfast. He has been appointed Design Associate at the Design Council to bring a specific range of expertise to their design support work. He actively participates in research practices and recently presented a paper based on ‘DeafSpace’ at the European Society for Mental Health and Deafness Congress in Wales.   

More about Richard Dougherty

Prof Ann Heylighen

Design Researcher at KU Leuven, Dept. of Architecture, Research[x]Design

Prof Ann Heylighen is a design researcher with a background in architectural engineering. As professor of design studies, she co-chairs the Research[x]Design group at KU Leuven, Department of Architecture. Her work explores how disability experience expands prevailing ways of understanding and designing space, for which she received support from the European Research Council. Currently she is Francqui Research Professor, Fellow of the Design Research Society, and Associate Editor of Design Studies. 

More about Prof Ann Heylighen

Dr Nina Vollenbröker

Associate Professor at The Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London (UCL)

Dr Nina Vollenbröker is Associate Professor at The Bartlett School of Architecture, where she teaches and coordinates programmes from BSc to PhD level. Her current research argues that the influential work of modernist architect Adolf Loos was fundamentally shaped by his deafness; it is supported by The Royal Institute of British Architects and The Paul Mellon Centre and will be published by the University of Illinois Press in 2023. Nina is an editor at architectural research quarterly, PI on a British Academy funded collaborative with a Lebanese NGO, and an independent photographer. 

More about Dr Nina Vollenbröker