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Arts University Bournemouth Studios
Client: Arts University Bournemouth
Location: Bournemouth, UK
Completion: October 2010

The new North Extension studios at the Arts University Bournemouth provide the university with an extension to its highly successful art gallery along with 3 additional floors of much needed studio space. At the same time its bold form continues the ongoing master plan objective to re-brand the university buildings in terms of a contemporary centre for the visual arts. As such it forms one among a number of striking additions whose express intent is to draw the eye away from the recessive tiled roofs of the original 1980s campus buildings.

The designs comprise a floating anthracite zinc cube with glazed front hovering above a fully glazed cafe/gallery podium, with a counterpoint tower formed by the subtle mesh cladding of an external fire stair. These new elements link with the massing of the adjacent accommodation block to create a new external piazza. This successfully draws the eye in towards the gallery entrance and ensures that the existing building mass recedes behind the landscaping into the background.

Internally the glazed walls and careful use of accent colours ensure a facility that is both full of life and at the same time light and airy. The popularity of the spaces both inside and out are a testimony to the success of the approach.