Amanda Yates

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Associate Professor - Spatial Design

Phone: +64 9 921 9999 #8388


Postal Address:

School of Art and Design
Faculty of Design and Creative Technologies
AUT University
Private Bag 92006
Auckland 1142
New Zealand

Links to relevant web pages:


M.Des [distinction], Massey University; B. Arch (Hons), B.BSc, B.A. Eng Lit, Victoria University of Wellington.

Memberships and Affiliations:

Director Emergent Ecologies Lab


Moving between urban and spatial design and installation practice Amanda Yates’ practice-led research explores issues of indigeneity and ecology. Amanda’s design-research has been published in Architecture in the Space of Flows, Taone Tupu Ora: Indigenous Knowledge and Sustainable Urban Design, and 46 Square Metres of Land Doesn’t Normally Become a House. Current work focuses on the city as an urban laboratory within which ecological/sustainable strategies can be foregrounded or tested. Amanda’s writing and making practices test out and extend her interests in indigenous eco-ontologies, new materialisms and agential realisms among other isms.

Amanda directs the Emergent Ecologies Lab, a design laboratory for ecology, indigeneity and urbanism that links design researchers, student emergent designers and external partners [iwi, Councils, business, communities]. The Lab works as a research-teaching nexus that links researchers and students with ‘live’ projects in the community. Central to our method is the development of aspirational near-future design-visions and the deployment of events or installations as critical tools for initiating transformative systems, spaces and events. We connect people and ideas through events [workshops, public talks, exhibitions and installations] and our website which publishes our design-research.

Selected Research Information

Research & Teaching Awards

  • Nominated by Massey University for a National Teaching Award 2012
  • Massey University, Vice-Chancellor’s Teaching Excellence Award 2012
  • Massey University, College of Creative Arts Teaching Excellence Award 2011
  • Massey University, University Research Award 2011

Design Awards

  • SILVER: Designers Institute of New Zealand Best Design Awards, Built Environment 2010 (finalists included the Supreme Court of NZ): Tokatea, Project Architect, Archiscape.
  • NZIA Regional Award 2010, Nelson Marlborough: Sounds House, Project Architect with Stephen Bonnington, Archiscape.and J.D.A.
  • NZIA Regional Award 2010, Wellington: Ground House, Project Architect, Archiscape.
  • NZIA Commercial and Industrial Design Award 2003: Nga Waka Winery, Project team member, HMA.
  • NZIA Residential Design Award 2003: Ogle House, Project team member, HMA.
  • Set Designer of the Year Chapman Tripp National Theatre Awards 1995: Think of A Garden’, Taki Rua Theatre, Wellington.
  • NZIA Awards Special Award for the Women In Architecture Exhibition Design 1993.: Collaborative design with Christina MacKay, Justine Clark, Hilary Albrook.
  • NZIA-Levene Travel Scholarship 1993: Final Year Architecture Studio Project; a joint project with Carol Curtis, Mary Daish, Melanda Slemint.


Book Chapters

  • Yates, A. (2010/2011). Spatial flows: Oceania. In A. Ballantyne & C.L. Smith (Eds), Architecture in the space of flows. Routledge.
  • Yates, A. (2010). Micro-urbanism: Regenerative buildings and the architectural landscape of the pa. In K. Stuart & M. Thompson-Fawcett (Eds), Tāone tupu ora: Indigenous knowledge and sustainable urban development. Wellington: Steele Roberts.

Journal Articles

  • Yates, A. (2006). On whenua, landscape and monumental interiors. IDEA Journal, 103-113.
  • Yates, A. (2004). DisPlay; remembering a performance landscape. Illusions, number 36, Winter, 51-52.

Refereed Proceedings

  • Yates, A., & Loving Hutchins, G. (2010). Site constructions: Performing time and space. In Stuart Grant (Ed.), time.transcendence.performance: Refereed Conference Proceedings (pp. 1-19). Melbourne, VIC, Australia: Monash University.
  • Yates, A., & Loving-Hutchins, G. (2010). Durational drawing and design: Shadow sketches, shadowing structure, shadowed spaces. In Drawing Out 2010 Proceedings, 7-9 April 2010. Melbourne: RMIT.
  • Yates, A. (2009). Cultural crossings: The in-between architecture of John Scott's Futuna Chapel. In J. Gatley (Ed), Cultural Crossroads: The 26th International SAHANZ conference, 2-5 July 2009. Auckland: SAHANZ.
  • Yates, A. (2008). On nature, culture and sustainable design. In C. Brebbia, (Ed.) Design and nature IV: comparing design in nature with science and engineering (pp. 191-200). Southampton: WIT Press.


  • Yates, A. M. (2010). Tokatea Roofscape. Spatial Design - unbuilt, for roofscape addition to existing house, Tokatea, Coromandel Peninsula, NZ. Published in Taone Tupu Ora: Indigenous knowledge and sustainable urban design. Wellington, New Zealand: Steele Roberts Aotearoa.
  • Yates, A. M. (2010). Hill House. Spatial Design – unbuilt. Series of drawings of a house in Wellington, NZ. Publicly exhibited at the Engine Room Gallery, Massey University, Wellington, NZ.
  • Yates, A. M. (2010). Te Whare Whenua. Spatial Design – unbuilt. Orakei, Auckland. Publicly exhibited at the Engine Room Gallery, Massey University, Wellington, NZ.
  • Yates, A. M., & Pedersen-Zari, M. (2009). Plant Room. Spatial Design, Concept Stage - unbuilt.
  • Yates, A. M., (2005). Tokatea. Sole Author: completed new house, Whitby, New Zealand. Published in Architecture in the space of flows. London: Routledge.
  • Yates, A. M., (2002). Sounds House (also known as Wilson House): Design and Project Architect with Stephen Bonnington: completed new house, Marlborough Sounds, New Zealand. Published in Architecture in the space of flows. London: Routledge.
  • Yates, A. M., (2002). Gallery for a Bachelor’s Bach: Sole Author: completed renovation and addition, Wellington, New Zealand.
  • Yates, A. M., (2001). Ground House: Sole Author: completed new house, Whitby, New Zealand. Published in Architecture in the space of flows. London: Routledge.

Performance & Display Environments

Performance Installations

  • Yates, A. M. (2012). Pop Up Garden: Civic Square. Edible Cities Urban Research Lab. Installation: timber frames, planted with food plants. Wellington, Civic Square. Janxx-March2012.
  • Yates, A. M. (2011). Pop Up Garden: Suburban Foodscape. Edible Cities Urban Research Lab. Installation: timber frames, planted with food plants. Wellington, Kilbirnie. 12th November - 20th December 2011.

Exhibition Designs

  • Yates, A. M. (2011, June 16). Performing Space In Oceania: New Zealand’s exhibit in the Architecture Section of the 2011 Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space. Design and site-specific installation: Plywood, acrylic sheet, a multi-media element, a porcelain vessel and salt. June 16-26 2011.
  • Yates, A. (2010). NZPQ10 Architecture Exhibition. In the NZPQ10 Performance Design Laboratory. Design and site-specific installation: ply, acrylic sheet and multi-media element. Massey University, Wellington, NZ. November 12 2010.
  • Yates, A. M. (2010). Live. Repeat. Playback: Architecture Exhibition, A Programme of Exhibitions, Performances and Panel Discussions. Site-specific installation: sand, architectural models and projection. St Paul St Gallery, Auckland, NZ. 13-28 August, 2010.
  • Yates, A. M. (2009). Oceanic Grounds: Architecture, the Evental and the In-between. Site-specific installation: large format photographs. Massey University, Wellington, NZ.
  • Yates, A. M.,, Hannah, D. M.,  Davies, H. (2002). 'Border Crossings' in THE DREAM HOUSE exhibition. Design and site-specific installation: graphite, builder's chalk, silver dust, mirrors and models. In Michael Hirschfeld Gallery, City Gallery Wellington, 19th July - 25th August, 2002.
  • Yates, A.M., Clarke, J.(1999). ‘Think of a garden fragment’, in the Fragments: Out of the Dark Theatre Arts Design Exhibition, International Festival of the Arts, Wellington. (1999). Site-specific installation.

Performance Design

  • Yates, A.M. (1997). ‘King Hits’, Taki Rua Theatre, Wellington, 1997.
  • Yates, A.M., Clarke, J.(1995). Think of a garden, Taki Rua Theatre, Wellington, 1995.
  • Yates, A.M. (1994). Don Juan, Victoria University of Wellington Theatre and Film Department production, 1994.