Architectonic Design

HMS Studio aims to develop the possibilities of the hand-drawn in creating work that is humanist and beautiful. 


Helen M. Strevens is the NZ based director of the eponymous HMS Studio. Before setting up HMS in 2011, Helen worked as an architect and continues to work as a film set designer. Her early career highlights include designing Peter Jackson’s country house and designing sets for Lord of the Rings, Hobbit and Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe.

Helen’s extensive design experience and drawing fluency has found a perfect outlet through HMS. She has an Escher-like fascination of spaces within drawings and describes her design work as “architectonic”.  “Drawing heavily on architectural themes and the principals of architectural design my work aims to enrich the spaces it inhabits.”

Helen’s black and white Rooms and Roman Graffiti series  illustrates the strong graphic bent to her work. At other times, her work is dizzyingly intricate. The Iris series, displays a drawing virtuosity developed by many years on the drawing board.

Variations on a theme is a key feature of her work - calling to mind Fornasetti, who, along with Jean Cocteau and Aldo Rossi, she cites as an influence.  Her designs are classic - able to be scaled up or down, rearranged, deconstructed and applied to products and interiors great and small.