• cover of Journal  Vol. 18 No. 01 (2021): (Extra) Ordinary Interiors: Practising Critical

    (Extra) Ordinary Interiors: Practising Critical Reflection
    Vol. 18 No. 01 (2021)

    (Extra) Ordinary Interiors calls for contributions from academics, research students and practitioners that demonstrate contemporary modes of criticality and reflection on specific interior environments in ways that expand upon that which is ordinary (of the everyday, common, banal, or taken for granted).

  • Co-constructing Body-Environments
    Vol. 17 No. 02 (2020)

    Significantly advanced from presentations delivered at the Body of Knowledge 2019 conference, each article in this special guest edited idea journal issue focusses on the interdisciplinary intersections, connections and findings across research practices that involve art and theories of cognition. In particular, articles emphasise how spatial art and design research approaches have enabled the articulation of a complex understanding of environments, spaces and experiences, which may also involve the spatial distribution of cultural, organisational and conceptual structures and relationships, as well as the surrounding design features. 

    Contributions explore: 

    How do art and spatial practices increase the potential for knowledge transfer and celebrate diverse forms of embodied expertise? 
    How do the examination of cultures of practice, Indigenous knowledges and cultural practices offer perspectives on inclusion, diversity, neurodiversity, disability and social justice issues? 
    How the art and spatial practices may contribute to research perspectives from contemporary cognitive neuroscience and the philosophy of mind? 
    The dynamic between an organism and its surroundings for example: How does art and design shift the way knowledge and thinking processes are acquired, extended and distributed? 
    How art and design practices demonstrate the ways different forms of acquiring and producing knowledge intersect? 

  • Cover of volume 17 number 1 of idea journal featuring a video by Linda Matthews

    Interior Technicity: Plugged In and/or Switched On
    Vol. 17 No. 01 (2020)

    Interior Technicity: Unplugged and/ or Switched On invites reflection on how interiors have always been augmenting entities and how they continue to be so—in other words, extending, facilitating and consolidating bodies within socio-cultural environments. Rather than seeing an interior as an ‘inside’ in opposition to a world beyond, it asks what modes of ‘folding inward’ have equipped and enabled the spatial environment? Technicity—the world of tools and technical objects that extend and mediate memory, as Bernard Steigler (1998) describes it—has never been what inside-ness, in its sheltering of life, keeps at bay; mediation is from the start technical, indexed to inscribing practices rich in temporal and embodied implications. By this reading, interiors have always been augmented and augmenting (in the sense of the Latin“augmentare”: to increase, enlarge, or enrich).

    This idea journal issue considers this mode of ‘folding inward’ as a condition of an interior’s specificity. Whether it be a small structure such as a tramping hut or a tiny house, a large complex interior environment such as an airport or shopping mall, handmade with local materials such as Somoan fale, or the result of manufacturing processes assembling artificial and pre-fabricated elements as in the case of a space craft, boat or train, interiors are augmented, mediated, generated or embellished by technologies. The effect of these technologies is not neutral; one’s experience of an interior is significantly influenced by the affective resonance of its technologies.

    Please check out AADR for a full copy 

  • IDEA journal cover

    DARK SPACE: the interior
    Vol. 16 No. 1 (2017)

    This edition of the IDEA Journal: DARK SPACE_the interior called for interdisciplinary collaborative discourse examining built or unbuilt projects/speculations/theoretical inquiry/design inquiry, positioned as:

    • Disruption to the realities and perceptions of (interior?) space

    • Interiors that catalyse symbioses (interior exterior)

    • Extreme interiors that confront the human sensorium, e.g. confined environments, isolated environments, highly sensuous environments

    • Experimental Interiors that manipulate the human sensorium

    • Historical precedents of Interiors that engage the human sensorium

    • Future projections of Interiors that are affecting/shifting changing the human sensorium
    • Physiological and or psychological analyses of Interiors that affect symbioses (interior exterior)
    Vol. 15 No. 1 (2015)

    Unprecedented movements of people, growth in population density and forces of capitalism and globalism shape the twenty-first century urban environment and transform how people live in the world – spatially, temporally and subjectively. In the disciplines of interior design, interior architecture, architecture, spatial design and urban design, one encounters the coupling of the conditions of ‘urban’ and ‘interior’ with increasing frequency. Urban interior, interior urbanization, urban interiority and urban interior design are used as provocations for designing, teaching and writing – researching and thinking – in cities and cultures as diverse as Milan, Madrid, Melbourne, Jakarta, Austin, London, Stockholm, Bangkok, Singapore and Bogotá.


    Stockholm S 2003

    Cover Photograph: Mark Pimlott

  • Design Activism
    Vol. 14 No. 1 (2014)

    The overarching theme of this journal is design activism. Designers need to be activists, and radical shifts are needed to allow any form of activism to evolve. Institutions of higher learning and the profession need to nurture and equip the next generation of designers with new ways of learning and practice; to achieve any form of positive change, design institutions, scholars and practitioners need to urgently change their models, modes and methodologies. Design pedagogy and practice needs to be realigned away from the current asymmetrical approaches to teaching, practice and research. Over the years, I have been nurturing and expanding an overall agenda that consistently works toward developing innovative solutions to benefit civil society and improve social innovation, sustainability and the environment. Design activism informs not only my philosophy as a designer, but my philosophy and practice as a teacher and scholar.

  • Unbecoming
    Vol. 13 No. 1 (2013)

    Designing interiors is the process, we say, of finding a place for everything, and putting everything in its place. Alberti claimed that ‘Beauty is that reasoned harmony of all the parts within a body, so that nothing may be added, taken away, or altered, but for the worse...’ (Leone Battista Alberti)

    This issue of the journal invites interdisciplinary collaborations with landscapists, geographers, gardeners, and other lovers of the changing environment of life as well as politicians, anthropologists and theologians: papers, projects and reviews that explore the emerging consideration of the ethics of the interior: how does, or could, the interior provoke, rather than dictate, behaviours and responses? How can design make its users neither its objects, nor its subjects, but its citizens?

  • Writing/Drawing
    Vol. 12 No. 1 (2012)

    Interiority is subject to specific sorts of disciplinary representation and the premise for this provocation is that images of interiority are frequently at odds with, or resistant to conventional representational systems. Interiority is attached to socially and culturally selected manifestations of power, gender, labour and materiality and these everyday conditions emerge in images of interiority, drawn or written, amplifying and disquieting usual disciplinary concerns.

  • Interior Economies
    Vol. 11 No. 1 (2011)

    This provocation encapsulated in the concept Interior Economies includes contributions as scholarly essays, visual essays and theorized creative practice across domestic, commercial, institutional and industrial interior domains. Guest editor Julieanna Preston offers the following prompt for researchers concerned with the interior. ‘Originally identifying the household or family as the basic unit of society, the term economy implicates the social and material relations of a prominent type of interior, the domestic sphere. The notion of economy has expanded in contemporary usage to denote systems of production, distribution, exchange and consumption at a global scale. In much of today’s world, to be economical is to make the efficient use of resources, even to the extent of frugality. And yet, in sharp contrast and with immediate relevance, interior economy conceptually refers to a face to face relational exchange, an active sharing and social interaction which has the capacity to occur in interiors other than those inscribed by physical enclosure or geographical locale.’


  • Interior Ecologies
    Vol. 10 No. 1 (2010)

    Contributors to the IDEA JOURNAL 2010 respond to the provocation Interior Ecologies: exposing the evolutionary interior to propose emergent interior debates on contemporary spatial, material and performative practices. Can a critical ecological approach to practice and discourse in interiors enable expanded locales for research and experiment across disciplinary and theoretical boundaries? Normative concepts concerned with the designed habitat, or discursive debates around the interfaces of interior and exterior conditions, may fall short in provoking interior thinking to engage through ecologies of practice that contribute to advancing environments, technologies and cultures.

    The IDEA JOURNAL 2010 exposes the engagement of interior practice in ecological, political, cultural and economic systems. The IDEA JOURNAL publishes scholarly accounts of writing and projects that move across disciplinary perspectives and temporal systems into an open-ended enquiry into ecologies for and of the interior.

  • Interior Territories
    Vol. 9 No. 1 (2009)

    PROVOCATION: Contributors to the IDEA JOURNAL 2009 respond to the provocation for Interior Territories: exposing the critical interior to propose interior discourses influenced by explorations into contemporary spatial, material and performative practices. What are the critical issues facing environments and societies that can be explored around the ideas of interior territories?

    Within increasingly homogenised and globalised public and private interiors, concepts of territory that infer relationships with located place and field can provoke new relationships concerning spatial practices and material and immaterial ecologies. The IDEA JOURNAL 2009 seeks to expose the engagement of interior practice in contemporary ecological, cultural and economic systems. The IDEA JOURNAL publishes scholarly accounts of writing and projects that move across disciplinary perspectives and temporal and political systems to express an open-ended enquiry into an expanded territory of the interior.

  • Transitional Reflection
    Vol. 8 No. 1 (2007)

    When a journal of interior design/interior architecture comes into being what does it mean for its related field and those with whom it intersects? In Bourdieu’s terms, a field is a domain of meaning in which its constituent players and acts align to give it definition and generate practices that become the evolving rules of the game that continue to be contested. With the appointment of a new executive editor and editorial board in 2008, the 2007 IDEA Journal marks a point of transition and, as such, provides an opportunity to reflect on the evolution of the journal over the past years, its contribution to the field of interior design/interior architecture, and its potential to continue to inform and transform the discipline.

  • Remodelling
    Vol. 7 No. 1 (2006)

    Remodelling existing buildings is the process of significantly changing a host building or structure to accommodate new use. It differs to practices such as preservation and conservation in that it is the process of substantially altering an existing building. Remodelling could be described as a process that encourages a continuous approach to the adaptation of an enclosure or a site. The transformation of an existing structure is a procedure that initially consists of reading the site: a course of action that ensures solid or concealed matter such as the structure or the narrative of the building can be exposed and then developed as potential generators for the modification process - a course of action that Rodolfo Machado describes as: ‘... a process of providing a balance between the past and the future’ (Machado, 1976, p. 27).

    Vol. 6 No. 1 (2005)

    This publication of papers on matters of interior design/interior architecture and landscape architecture, and insides and outsides, is another manifestation of INSIDEOUT, a symposium held in April 2005 at Domain House in the Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne. The idea of holding a symposium where landscape and interior were brought together emerged during a conversation at SAHANZ, Brisbane, 2002. I remember feeling a sense of mischievous glee at the idea of holding a conference where what is usually so dominant in the fields of landscape and interior and, in a literal sense, the middle bit between them – architecture – would be absent. I wondered what kinds of conversation might be had without a dominant voice and referent.

  • IDEA Journal
    Vol. 5 No. 1 (2004)

    An interior history as a concept brings together history and interior design with a particular emphasis on addressing the spatial and temporal qualities that are implicit in both practices. Titled ‘Towards an Interior History’, this paper focuses on a process of making, hence the word ‘towards’ an interior history. It is not yet in a position to define what an interior history is – to answer the question ‘what is an interior history?’ – and may never be. By the end of the paper, it is hoped that questions such as ‘How does an interior history work?’ ‘How does it function?’ will be understood as more useful to pose. Why? Because dominant models of history and interior design have produced particular kinds of histories of interior design – ones which privilege the visual, hence objects and permanent architectural elements, as well as structures of enclosure and containment. An interior history as a concept celebrates the role of history in the production of the new and seeks to respond to current forces emerging in the design of interiors – for example, temporality, movement, change, encounters. The position here is not one of criticism and a quest for a better history, an attempt to re-write the past in order to re-right. The term ‘inter-story’ – formed from a conjunction between interior and history – is introduced as a technique for re-thinking history and interior design and as an approach to be taken up in a movement towards an interior history in the making of an interior history.

  • IDEA Journal
    Vol. 4 No. 1 (2003)

    Before we can approach the tension between austerity and excess – or any other productive tension in a design practice – we must first enter the metaphysical space of ‘interior’ itself.

    The notion of interior is always defined by at least three ‘working parts’: inside, outside, and (most important yet least noticed) the threshold setting one off from the other. Properly speaking, this threshold is neither outside nor inside; rather, in setting the limit between them, it partakes of both. Like the skin of a body or the cladding of a building, indeed like any surface, the threshold comes into contact with what lies on both sides of it, linking the two environments in the act of separating them. ‘A surface separates from out and belongs no less to one than to the other’ (Don DeLillo).

  • IDEA Journal
    Vol. 3 No. 1 (2002)

    Spatial ordering systems in contemporary architecture and interior architecture based on any form of meaningful geometry is rare, the geometric ordering principles taken for granted in the great architecture of history are no longer understood, are ignored or derided as being stultifying and formulaic. That without exception these principles were based firmly on the numbers, patterns and geometries to be found in the natural world counts for very little. Our understanding of, and connection with, nature has deteriorated to such an extent that we are virtual foreigners in our land. That such a relationship between the great architecture of the past and its context was understood to be of fundamental importance, reflecting a healthy relationship between the building and the natural world, is of no importance in an age when the personal aesthetic sensitivities, predilections and tastes of the artist/designer, no matter how ill informed, are held to be the ultimate determinant of the configuration and nature of the built fabric. The gulf that has opened between humankind and the natural environment. so blindingly obvious in the ever-increasing environmental degradation wrought by human hands, cannot be argued to be unrelated to this ignorance.

  • IDEA Journal
    Vol. 2 No. 1 (2001)

    'When you asked me to [...]' (Woolf 1993:3)  write about architecture and the interior I wondered where does one turn? What construction of history and theory is invoked when undertaking such a task? What position is given architecture and the interior in such writing? Might it be interiors and what they are like; might it be architecture and interiors they create; might it be architecture and interiors they write; might it be written by the interiors encountered and the books read? I am reading Virginia Woolf's Room of One's Own and I read 'Lies will flow from my lips, but there may perhaps be some truth mixed up with them; it is for you to seek out this truth and to decide whether any part of it is worth keeping. If not, you will of course throw the whole of it into the wastepaper basket and forget all about it' (Woolf 1993:4), a necessary condition for establishing a shift in thought and expression over that which is held as authoritative and immovable. Unexpected thoughts on the interior.

  • IDEA Journal
    Vol. 1 No. 1 (1999)

    Interested Australian universities with Interior Design/Interior Architecture degrees held an inaugural meeting in Sydney in 1996 to elicit interest in an association to advocate Interior Design/Interior Architecture education and research. In 1997 IDEA was formalised to encourage and support excellence in the discipline. This is the Inaugural publication of the annual ‘IDEA Referred Design Scheme’, one of the activities the IDEA committee promotes. Participating universities include: Curtin University of Technology, Queensland College of Art, Queensland University of Technology, Northern Territory University, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Swinburne University of Technology, University of New South Wales, University of South Australia and the University of Technology Sydney.