Picture of the project The Boy in the Washing Machine by Leon Gundersen

The Boy in the Washing Machine

Project by Leon Gundersen

How can visual interpretations, inspired by special interests, function as tools for communicating about autism?

“Another child participated at the school's carnival (where children usually dress up as movie characters or animals) in a washing machine costume, which was his special interest.” This sentence stuck with me. There was a beauty in the fact that a child could find excitement in washing machines. An object in my daily life that I rarely gave a second thought. The ability of genuine fascination for possibly any topic made me want to learn more about the special interests of autistic people. I wanted to understand how these interests could be explored through visual communication and what that could mean for how we communicate about autism.

Who is Leon?

Leon finds inspiration in motion, colors, bold shapes, people, music, senses, the extraordinary, the weird, the honest, and coincidences. Probably more, who knows? Using all sorts of sources for ideas, he combines areas such as graphic design, illustration, and animation to offer alternative views of the world. For him, the act of designing has become a tool to explore and understand how things are connected, and how the language of visuality relates to being human.

Portrait picture of Leon Gundersen