Dr Suzie Attiwill is Associate Dean Interior Design, RMIT School of Architecture and Urban Design
In 2018, Suzie was appointed the inaugural Associate Dean Interior Design for the School of Architecture and Urban Design. In this role, she provides strategic leadership to the discipline of interior design and programs in vocational, higher education and higher degrees by research. Prior to this appointment, Suzie was the Deputy Dean Learning + Teaching from 2013 to 2017; and prior to this program director of Interior Design from 2005 to 2012.
She joined the Interior Design program in a continuing role in 2000. From 1999 to 2008, she coordinated the History and Theory stream of the Interior Design program. In this role, she developed course curriculum that articulated a history and theory particular to the discipline of interior design as one that was not equated with interior architecture. Suzie has led design studios with 2nd and 3rd year students, supervised final year undergraduates and postgraduates, and taught in specialisation areas such as exhibition design.
Suzie is recognised internationally for her contribution to the discipline of interior design. Her research has been published as book chapters, journal articles, conference presentations and exhibitions; she is regularly invited as an international visiting professor to offer workshops and intensives; present keynotes and lectures. She was awarded the '2017 RMIT Research Award for Impact in Design (ECR)'.
Her practice research poses questions of interior and interiority in relation to contemporary conditions of living, inhabitation, subjectivity, pedagogy and creative practice. The philosophy of Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari continue to be a force in this research which is conducted through a practice of designing with a curatorial inflection attending to arrangements (and re-arrangements) of spatial, temporal and material relations.
Suzie's PhD titled '?interior, practices of interiorizations, interior designs' is a practice-based research PhD that questions dominant phenomenological models of interior and interiority to re-pose 'interior' as a practice/process of interiorization in relation with exteriors. The research was conducted through curatorial and exhibition practice.
As the Associate Dean Interior Design, Suzie provides strategic and academic discipline leadership and management, while ensuring consistency with the strategic plans and objectives of the University and College. In this role, she is responsible for driving L+T quality, research relevance and industry engagement for the discipline. As associate dean, Suzie represents the discipline in external and internal engagements and partnerships including alumni, academic and industry relationships both locally and internationally. She is a member of the School of Architecture and Urban Design's senior executive.
Suzie is registered as a Category 1 Research Supervisor. Areas of research supervision focus on the questions of of interior and interiority in relation to practices of design, art, craft, theory, writing and curating. She supervises emerging practitioners in the generative research mode as well as established practitioners in the reflective industry practice mode.
Suzie also offers courses and design studios in the interior design program on a regular basis.
- PhD (Architecture and Design), RMIT University. Research by practice, 2013 – '?interior, practices of interiorization, interior designs'.
- Master (Design), RMIT University. Research by practice, 1994 – 'The Reposing Box: the reinvention of the archive'.
- Bachelor of Arts (Interior Design 1st Class Honours), RMIT University, 1991 – 'The Collectors'.
- Certificate of Applied Arts Melbourne School of Textiles, 1986
- Bachelor of Fine Arts (Honours in Fine Arts and Indian Studies) University of Melbourne, 1983. Thesis title: 'The Modern Fairy Tale. The Café Aubette, Strasbourg, 1928'.
Since 1992, Suzie has had an independent practice that involves the design of exhibitions, curatorial work, writing and working on a range of interdisciplinary projects in Australia and overseas. She has extensive experience as a journal editor and exhibition curator. Suzie is regularly invited to judge design awards and peer review for journals, book proposals and conferences. She currently sits on editorial advisory boards for IE: Studio; Interiority; Interstices. Journal of Architecture and Related Arts; and RMIT Design Archives Journal. Suzie is an honorary member of Australian Design Centre; Craft and Interior Design/Interior Architecture Educators Association.
Previous roles include:
- Artistic Director, Craft Victoria, 1996 to 1999
- Executive Editor, IDEA JOURNAL, 2014–2015
- Chair and Director, IDEA (Interior Design/Interior Architecture Educators Association) 2006 to 2012.
- Director, West Space Board Artist-led initiative, 2006 to 2010 (Chair: May 2007 to April 2009)
Examiner of PhDs: Faculty of Architecture, Art and Design, Monash University; Hasselt University, Belgium; University of Pretoria, South Africa; Faculty of Art and Design, UNSW; School of Art, Australian National University, Canberra.
Examiner of Masters: Faculty of Architecture, Art and Design, Monash University; College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales; Victoria College of the Arts, University of Melbourne; University of Technology, Sydney; and Massey University and Victoria University, Wellington, New Zealand.
- Taipei International Design Awards, China Centre for Production, Taiwan.
- Room of the Year, House and Garden Magazine.
- IDEA Awards Interior Design Excellence Awards.
- Premier Design Award (State of Design Festival).
- Premier's Award for Design Leadership: The Premier's Design Awards, State of Design Festival.
- Attiwill, S. (2021). Interior Designing in the Urban Environment: Practices for the 21st century In: Handbook of Research on Methodologies for Design and Production Practices in Interior Architecture, IGI Global, United States
- Attiwill, S. (2020). Urban Interiors and Interiorities In: Cultural, Theoretical, and Innovative Approaches to Contemporary Interior Design, IGI Global , Hershey, United States
- Attiwill, S. (2019). A new image for interior and interiority In: Interior Futures, Crucible Press, California, United States
- Attiwill, S. (2019). Outside-Interior: ?Interior In: Aberrant Nuptials. Deleuze and Artistic Research 2, Leuven University Press, Leuven, Belgium
- Attiwill, S. (2018). Urban Interiority as Collective Individuation In: The Stories of Interior: Multiple Perspectives on Interiority, Jakarta, Indonesia, 30-31 January 2018
- Attiwill, S. (2018). Practice Research PhDs in Interior Design In: Proceedings of the 1st Annual Design Research Conference (ADR18), Sydney, Australia, 27-28 September 2018
- Attiwill, S. (2018). Speeds, Slowness, Temporal Consistencies and Interior Designing In: Flow. Interior, Landscape and Architecture in the Era of Liquid Modernity, Bloomsbury Publishing , London, United Kingdom
- Attiwill, S.,Jamieson, S.,Raheem, A.,Scott, R. (2018). Wind Meeting In: The Performance Arcade 2018 - Counter Narrative Wellington, New Zealand
- Attiwill, S.,Bird, T.,Eckersley, A.,Pont, A.,Roffe, J.,Rothfield, P. (2017). Practising with Deleuze, Edinburgh University Press, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
- Attiwill, S.,Crespi, L.,Hermida, B.,Fassi, D.,Giunta, E. (2016). URBAN + INTERIOR In: 2015 IDEA Journal Brisbane, Australia
10 PhD Completions and 9 Masters by Research Completions18 PhD Current Supervisions
- DAP_r Design and Architecture Practice Research. Funded by: Office for Learning and Teaching Grant 2015 from (2016 to 2018)