Art, Research & Adventure

Art, Research & Adventure


A installation commissioned to reflect the building's unique context and purpose.

Client: The University of Bath
Photography: Dom Moore

A permanent, building-wide installation responding to the meeting of culture and academia on the University of Bath's campus. The installation is encountered in many different places throughout the building, with each location presenting varying expressions of a common visual language.

The Process

The process began with an invitation to explore the University's archives, with a particular focus on the architectural history of the campus. The Alison and Peter Smithson played a pivotal role in designing some key buildings on the campus and their unique place in British architectural history was something we were keen to acknowledge by incorporating imagery from certain records in the archives.

We also explored long-outdated text books and journals, scanning images and textures to feed into our image-making process.

A final source of visual material was the Internet Image Archive, a vast resource of out of copyright images from books published around the world. We searched for academic themes in the archive, pulling out the images which spoke to the material was gathered in the archives to add to a bank of visual material was then used to create the installation. The images were then put through a series of digital and analogue processes to give them a more unified look and feel. These processes included printing, rescanning, colourisation and halftone screening.

A series of graphic compositions were then created in response to each of the spaces the installation needed to occupy. Once the compositions were finalised some of the shapes were used to frame the images we had created.

Each space was unique and had different requirements. The windows still needed to let a lot of light through them, the cafe area needed to be food-safe and easily cleanable, the corridors needed to be robust enough to stand up to years of people brushing up against them and the atrium and stairwell spaces needed to have a greater amount of presence given their scale. To address these requirements needed a great deal of dialogue with the building users, as well as modelling and mock-ups.

We created 3D models of certain areas of the building, like the stairwells and atrium, while flat plans were sufficient for the windows and other spaces. Modelling like this enabled us to bring our intentions to life for the building users and confidently plan the installation with our production team WithPrint.