Hope Lives Here

  • Prize
    Winner in Interior Design - Institutional
  • University
    Sydney Design School
  • Lead Designer
    Louise Mackay
  • Interior Designer
    Louise Mackay
  • Location
    Waratah, Newcastle - Australia


In 2005, Louise was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia, a cancer of the bone marrow. Louise was 18 years old. Within days she was receiving chemotherapy and blood transfusions - commencing a treatment protocol of 36 months.

Some of the hardest parts of her treatment was the isolation, losing her hair, facing the prospects of death, pain management, boredom and losing many friends throughout her journey. At one stage Louise spent more than three months straight in the Haematology Ward at the Newcastle Mater Hospital.

Hope lives here is a vision that challenges and re-imagines the standards of how we provide and receive cancer care. Patients can stay in these facilities for months at a time, and some young people spend years in the ward. Tragically, for some patients, this is their last home.

Through considerate, patient-centred design, we can help patients face these challenges, stay positive, decrease isolation and find purpose.

The vision for the ward is to introduce colour and materiality that promotes hope, joy and safety. Colour psychology has been proven to affect human behaviour and emotion in cancer care.

Louise is a multi-award winning designer who navigates clients through the anatomy of design from concept to delivery. Through a curated design narrative, Louise specialises in concept development, placemaking and curating spaces that ignite feelings of joy.

Louise is on a mission to realise memorable and creative design solutions through bold application of colour and exploration of texture and materiality. Her true purpose: to challenge the design industry with curiosity, authenticity and heart.

Other prizes
Winner - Dulux Colour Awards 2020 (Student Category) Bronze - International Design Awards 2020 Honourable Mention - International Design Awards 2020