Géraldine Biard's designs relieve dementia sufferers

French designer Géraldine Biard’s new furniture collection aims to relieve the stress of dementia.

From the Series

Over 40 million people suffer from dementia worldwide. The umbrella term is used to describe several illnesses affecting the brain progressively, the most well-known being Alzheimer’s disease. While the condition is incurable, French designer Géraldine Biard has made it her mission to establish new standards of healthcare for dementia sufferers.

Her new furniture collection, Jardin d’Hiver, uses aromatherapy and light therapy to alleviate anxiety and the different sleep disturbances associated with dementia.

“With this collection I aimed to establish new standards for healthcare design and invite designers across the globe to consider the growing problem of dementia,” says Biard.

Biard’s collection was made using the translucent and resistant qualities of Corian to design the top section of her pieces. She drew her inspiration from working with dementia sufferers while completing an MA in Furniture Design from Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design.

“I worked with people with dementia in Switzerland and I noticed that in addition to an anxiety caused by the disease, the care environment itself can be another source of stress for the residents,” explains Biard.

“With no medical cure, for me the best way to soothe and revitalize the individuals’ life was by using relaxation through design. Each piece of furniture from Jardin d’Hiver will act as a companion that will join us during every step of the journey.”

The collection is composed of two bedside cabinets, a console table, and a credenza. It is meant to follow individuals from their home to a care home to use with a program complementing the patient's daily routine.

“The design evokes an open window into a snow-covered landscape, where the aromatherapy emanates from a sculpted sensual mountain, and the light therapy diffuses behind a graphic scenery that invites the individual to envisage a faraway relaxing landscape,” writes Biard.

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