Harry’s Design with Pride

rainbow animationPortrait of Matthias Hollwich

Matthias Hollwich

Principal Architect, HWKN Architecture DPC

Preferred Pronouns: He / Him

What does Pride mean to you?

To me, pride is about reflecting the past and envisioning the future. Nothing we do today would be possible without the people who led the trail before us.

Describe a moment when being both an artist/designer and a part of this community has helped you through a difficult time / helped you find a way forward.

When I was growing up and realizing that my life would not conform to the “standards" of society, it helped me challenge what people describe as standard since it is such an artificial construct. All my work is looking into standards and challenges them.

Are there any LGBTQ artists/designers that you’re currently a fan of?

There are many - but I am a fan of the people society did not pay much attention to until recently. The people without a shiny Instagram account - those going into a hospital and caring for people they do not know. Scientists who have so much more to offer to the world than influencers… and many of them are from our LGBTQ community.

Why is designing for aging populations important to you?

Why do you think mainstream architecture doesn’t pay as much attention to it? Truth is, we are all aging, and we are not paying attention to the fact that our world is not designed for a user group we all will become one day if we are lucky. The problem is that designing for older people is not sexy in the eyes of society, so it is overlooked.

What advice do you have for young people in the LGBTQ community who want to pursue a creative path?

Look for long term goals and different paths towards them. Growth and change are very exciting when we initiate them. Look for people in the community who support you and your vision. The LGBTQ network is very powerful and it rewarding to tap into the network - but also remember .. it is all about taking and giving - return the favor to your peers.

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