The new suite is housed in the museum’s former Printing and Printmaking gallery, and will comprise a 600m2 north lit gallery, the Studio space for installations, events and creative workshops, and a social space with a cafe extending the full façade of the museum.
The Media Space has been formed through a collaboration between the Science Museum and the National Media Museum. According to Ben Kelly Design, it aims to provide a ‘a democratic space that encourages information sharing, and it provides an evolving forum that responds to and reflects our ever-changing media age’.
Consultancy Drinkall Dean is the lead 3D exhibition designers for the first three exhibitions within the main Media Space gallery.
Ben Kelly Design’s interiors feature materials including reclaimed pitch pine cladding, glazed bricks and leather, with coloured timber blocks laid in patterns ‘that play with scale and define zones’ used on flooring.
The consultancy says that it used the existing building fabric as the background for the new designs, with a large metallic gauze running down Exhibition Road before creating the entrance to the space.
‘The design exploits the potential overlap and relationship between activities’, says Ben Kelly Design.
‘[Our] approach retains and exploits the qualities of the building, while creating a stimulating visual landscape capable of accommodating and adapting to a changing programme of events’.
The gallery space, which will showcase the National Photography Collection through a series of exhibitions, is housed in a rectangular form, and is subdivided into three rooms to increase flexibility.
Divisions between the rooms are partly glazed to ‘retain the heroic volume of the overall space’, says Ben Kelly Design.
The first exhibition in the space will be the Universal Everything and You show, a large audio-visual artwork created collaboratively through a smart phone app by art and design collective Universal Everything.