City Architecture Office  

The National Travelling Gallery


Project Value: £100k
Client : City of Edinburgh Council
Design Stage : C

The Artbus travelling gallery evokes a sense of migratory transience within a static environment. Its role is to bring artwork in a contemporary setting to places where this may not otherwise exist. Our approach to the design is to celebrate this unique quality: a special container to carry a cultural message around the country.

The interpretation of these factors helps to achieve a strong sense of place & identity.

The bus footprint, accommodation and technical requirements influence the arrangement of the space and for the gallery to remain as flexible as possible. A partition separates the drivers cabin from the exhibition space, and a lightweight canopy folds out to form a covered entrance to welcome visitors.

During the day, the skylight provides diffused natural light, allowing the gallery to become a place of quiet contemplation. Alternatively, all natural light may be blocked to create a ‘black box’. An additional lighting rack running the length of the gallery, provides 3 sources of artificial light (diffuse, ambient & directional). It also contains warm air & ventilation control as well as sound absorbent wings. Perimeter ‘halo’ lighting makes the ceiling appear to float above the gallery walls.


National Travelling Gallery

National Travelling Gallery