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🟩 GreenBricks Building of the Week 🟩 Somerset House Studios

Experimental green

“Bringing experimental messiness back into central London” – this is the aim of Somerset House Studios. Transforming Grade I listed former Inland Revenue office into artist workspace.


🏢Building Details

  • Completed 2021

  • 3,550 sq m – experimental workspace for artists + makers

  • Winner New London Architecture Awards – Best Workplace 2022

👷🏾‍♀️Developer & Contractor

✍️Architects & Engineers


  • Redevelopment + retrofit of 250 year-old-building into contemporary art centre

  • The as-found building fabric provided first resource for materials – a highly detailed drawn inventory used as a tool to assess significance and plan strategy for restoration + reuse

  • Late 20th century Inland Revenue office desks adapted with painted timber extensions to create useful workspaces

  • Light touch work: some rooms left as found, with only discrete acoustic treatments + servicing to enhance use for production

🥦 Wellbeing

  • Somerset House is home to the biggest concentration of creative industries in central London: the Studios are its engine room, providing affordable workspaces for 100 artists + actively nurturing cross-disciplinary conversations between residents

  • Includes a family of rooms for producing, performing + presenting

  • Series of communal rooms developed with intent of actively nurturing new community – including snooker room + bar designed in collab with Frank’s Café in Peckham

  • Monotonous length of windowless, double loaded corridors broken with brightly coloured painted arches – recalling quaint terraces houses

🎈Bonus feature

The project has been praised by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, for being a model of how affordable workspace can be made available in central London, being developed for under £1,200/m2.

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