Art Studio & Sculpture Gallery

The Art Bunker, an art studio & sculpture gallery, is a vision to create an arts and community resource. Designed in collaboration with Allan Murray Design, this striking new community venture brings together artists, community, and public accessed external sculpture gardens. This is an experimental piece of work exploring our reflections.

Project & Environmental Data

Project Info

  • Cost: £3,000,000
  • Collaborators: Allan Murray Design
  • Image Credit: Ineffable Tale

Collaborator: Allan Murray Design

Renders by: Ineffabletale

Other arts buildings by PAD studio: The Artist Studios, The Exbury Egg

Environmental Data

  • Heating/Hot Water
    Electric Gas Ground Source Air Source
  • Solar Thermal
    Yes No
  • Rain Water Harvest
    Yes No
  • Ventilation
    MVHR Natural
  • Energy Storage
    Yes No

During the pandemic, communities lost access to art as an expression of unique cultural identity and civic pride. We learned to love public spaces and our freedom to dwell and reflect in them. The Art Bunker is an inspiring place to gather, learn and interact in the process of making, discussing and questioning all things creative. Celebrating art both inside and outside.

The rt studio & sculpture gallery is a place where the community can come together for a diverse range of activities in an inspiring setting that nurtures creativity and people. The primary gallery space hosts changing exhibitions, whilst the secondary large studio has the flexibility to accommodate both exhibitions, lectures, and workshops. An external landscaped space offers a place to pause, reflect and enhance the local community spirit, prevalent throughout the lockdown period when we sought generous and inspiring outdoor public spaces.

Dramatically sculpted its form is directly inspired by the powerful geometries and angular remains of historic military fortifications. A light skin sits in contrast with the heavy wrapping metal. The entrance is open and engaging, it is not a building of military defence but invites inclusivity. It is a building that is formally distinctive and deliberately iconic. Bridging community and arts, creating an oasis of gardens, artworks, and community.

Sustainability is a key design driver, including the circularity of materials, local sourcing and low embodied carbon. The exposed glulam structure is low in embodied carbon, and can be dismantled, adapted, and reconstructed in the future. Metal cladding panels sit on an insulated stressed plywood skin which can be recycled at the end of the building life. The Glasscrete lime floor is made from 100% recycled glass with a natural lime topping. Lime re-absorbs carbon dioxide emissions during the production process. The materials re-carbonate carbon dioxide over its in-use phase, creating a complete life cycle, closed-loop process, sequestering carbon. The art studio & sculpture gallery utilises a ground source heat pump system to deliver renewable energy into the building and the grid.

We question our clients, the site, the design, we question techniques, materials, and collaborators. By constantly questioning we are always learning and improving, pushing our designs forward to ensure we are at the forefront of our practice.

We believe that quality architecture adds value, both emotional and financial. Our architecture enhances your sense of well-being, the value of which is difficult to quantify in monetary terms. Our design skill, knowledge and tenacity also add financial value as the benefit of realising quality design increases the value of a site and maximises your investment.