My thesis project ‘Multi-personal living’ explores the multigenerational living through personal perspective of the individual’s life story as a driving force in the design process.

The project started with the exploration of the life and struggles of my Great Grandmother who lives in the housing estate in Krakow, Poland. The project revealed the complexity of her experiences with her physical environment and the impact of the changing reality of her life when familiar places turned into challenging and isolating settings.

To respond to those issues, the project explored the idea of multigenerational living in the process of  reimagining the estate of my Grandma. Her needs became the driving factor of the design. The project introduced 7 versions of my Great Grandmother moving in together over time. It focused on her personal perspective and proactively involved her needs through different stages of her life.

The idea of the different versions of my Great Grandmother living together in the same building represented conceptual way of thinking of different generations. This enabled me to explore the needs and negotiations of the space that happen between people of different ages. The project provided an alternative approach to multigenerational planning; one concerned with individual and personal needs. The negotiation of space at every stage created spaces that promote social interactions. Furthermore, the adaptability of the flats contributed to the development of a more cohesive community formation.

The design was developed using Bricolage design process; it introduced each stage of life gradually as they moved in together. It investigated the impacts of the changing reality, whose dynamics were informed by the evolving family settings in corresponding stages. The project showed how the building evolved, expended, adapted and shrunk over time following those changes, driven by the personal perspective of the 7 versions of my Great Grandma.