- 2012 – 2013
- Location: Yorkshire Sculpture Park
- Client: Arts Council Collection
- Project Status: built
- Contract value: £148,000
- RIBA National Award 2014
- AJ Small Projects Award 2014 – Shortlisted
- YSP Art Fund Museum of the Year 2014
A new gallery made for one of the most celebrated and distinctive artworks of recent years, ’Seizure’ by Roger Hiorns. The relocation of the work from London to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park involved a fundamental re-invention of the work, requiring intense sensitivity towards the artwork and a close working process with the artist. The work was inevitably redefined in this process, and the architecture is therefore highly nuanced, balancing the primacy of the internal experience of the work with the history evident in its new object status. A condition of instability is achieved by the siting of the gallery on the threshold between public park and service yard.
The new gallery also required a sensitive response to its setting amongst a rich ensemble of historic buildings, gardens and landscape. At the same time the artwork imposed very particular conservation requirements – the mass of copper sulphate crystals requires precise environmental conditions for its long term stability.
The design reconciles these complex needs using the historical precedents of grotto, folly and cave. A robust contemporary interpretation of these precedents draws on agricultural and industrial building techniques, used with refinement and grace. The required free ventilation is provided by slits between the cladding blocks, creating an ethereal and mysterious atmosphere. Systematic use of bespoke pre-cast elements references the original site but can clearly be dismantled, a key part of the brief.
The visitor sequence has been carefully choreographed to allow adjustment, acclimatisation and preparation for the experience of the artwork. The visitor experience is one of discovery and revelation.