Wysing Arts Centre

Hawkins\Brown, Cambridgeshire, 2008


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The North elevation of the studiobuilding alternates floor-to-ceiling glazing with large louvred panels 

Helene Binet (website)     Download Original

  • The North elevation of the studiobuilding alternates floor-to-ceiling glazing with large louvred panels    
  • The building fronts onto an empty plot and Tudor-style cottage    
  • Extruded boes break up the receptions exterior    
  • View of studios accessed by a deck and the reception beyond    
  • Interior cabinets which openon to the louvred shutters for ventilation    
  • Interior view of reception    
  • The two buildings face a shared courtyard, used by the centre for large installations    
  • View of centre from road    
  • Exterior view of reception    
  • View of cabinets open onto louvred shutters    
  • Site plan    
  • Ground floor plan    
  • First floor plan    
  • Reception plan    
  • Elevation    
  • Model showing arrangement of the buildings compromising the Wysing Arts Centre    
  • Cladding system detail    

Rural arts centre in Bourn, Cambridgeshire providing artists studios, exhibitions and workshops for both the local and wider community

The architect's scheme replaces the dilapidated existing buildings and demonstrates the centre's high ambitions for the future.

Two distinct new buildings were proposed - a reception and a studio facility. These are located adjacent to existing converted farm sheds and a grade II listed 17th century farmhouse. The cluster of buildings created defines a number of external spaces and courtyards of varying enclosure and character. The arrangement is typical of the local vernacular and provides a template for future development.

The two-storey studio-block is sited toward the front of the site foregrounding the principle activity of the centre (artistic production) and providing a counterpoint to the adjacent farmhouse. Although there is a clear contrast in the scale and massing of the two buildings, the composition of the principal north facade to the studio block refers to the aesthetic of the farmhouse's timber frame structure. This is achieved using a modular, prefabricated gluelam cladding frame across the full facade. The frame is in-filled with full height timber windows and ventilation panels creating an additional rhythm within the composition.


  • Begun: Nov 2006
  • Completed: Feb 2008
  • Floor area: 775m2
  • Sector: Arts and culture
  • Total cost: £1.3M
  • Procurement: JCT standard building contract without quantities SBC 05 XQ
  • CO2 Emissions: 37kg/m2/year
  • Address: Wysing Arts Centre, Fox Road, Bourn, Cambridgeshire, CB23 2TX, United Kingdom

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