School of Art, Birmingham City University

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School of Art, Birmingham City University

The School of Art is an outstanding building conceived in response to the revolutionary philosophies for art education that emerged in the city during the late nineteenth century. It is undoubtedly Chamberlain and Martin’s finest building, but had fallen into serious disrepair and did not provide the facilities required for a modern art college one hundred years later. Associated Architects was asked to prepare a comprehensive scheme of refurbishment, remodelling and extension of this Grade I listed building.

The principal studios have been retained and secondary spaces subdivided to provide smaller rooms for seminars, offices and workshops. A significant new gallery has been created at second floor level and the whole building restructured to promote public access, to provide a city centre showcase for the University. The work ranges from strict conservation to exciting contemporary additions designed to complement the existing fabric. Special attention was paid to space-making as well as the contribution of hard and soft landscape works.


Civic Trust Award 1998
RIBA Architecture Award 1996

Architect’s Journal 16 November 1995


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