"...many of us simply walk over vast swathes of history, without ever knowing it."

Rob Dennis Architects



"This is a proposal
that could easily be executed - it fits perfectly into the typologies of our notions of a ‘cultural building’.”
- Peter Seal


The essence of the proposal is found in the representation of the processes in the collection of the physical, meta-physical and historical site references. These references are mapped, etched, scribed, extruded, and inserted into the primary forms which emerge from the research and collection.

The orchestration of the resultant forms and spatial expressions collectively creates the new environment in which to house the celebrated collection.

This new spatial expression seeks to interact with the urban environment in a dynamic way, literally through interactive media and architecture and figuratively through a variety of educational programmes. An appreciation of this dynamic intervention will be at the immediate urban, local and national levels.

The new environment or building is divided into three key areas:
1. Public access areas (galleries, lectures, cafes, education areas (for schools)
2. Public/Private areas (seminars, specialist galleries where access is restricted)
3. Private areas (research laboratories)

The proposal takes inspiration from the nature of finding objects (excavation) and the fact that many of us simply walk over vast swathes of history, without ever knowing it. With this in mind, the concept that such artefacts form a landscape through which one passes led to the major element of the scheme — a continuous landscape on a number of levels, which worked its way around the site.

In some areas, this landscape is enclosed, forming buildings and rooms for activities such as education, as well as having a lecture theatre and more formal gallery spaces. In other areas, the landscape is exposed to the elements, much like the artefacts have been at some time. Finally, there are transparent elements, showing the artefact to the viewer, but are protected from further damage (decaying artefacts).

In the main gallery spaces, there will a mixture of floor standing elements and also floor based (sunken) exhibition cases. This mixture will largely depend on the artefacts themselves. However, the floor will be constructed in a way that will allow for a raised floor, into which glass cases which visitors will be able to ‘walk over’ as part of the gallery landscape.

Circulation methods are primarily via the ramped landscape which works its way around the building, but also through the feature elevators & display which form part of a semi-enclosed courtyard to the street.