unibox - grey - 2021
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Royal Academy of Arts Display Showcases

Royal Academy of Arts Display Showcases

Black powder coated showcase solution, designed in collaboration with Tom Dixon

A destination for artists and the general public, set in the very heart of London, for nearly 250 years the Royal Academy has been the place to make, exhibit and debate art.

However, as a private organisation with no public funding, friend and trustee Stephen Fry once said of the Academy: “Where friends go is a bit like a 1970s polytechnic staff room. They can sit down and have a cup of coffee but we think they deserve so much more.”

Determined to improve the facilities for existing friends, a refurbishment plan was started to create a club-like atmosphere in the centre of the capital.

Concept

Resolved to reflect the long and illustrious history of the Academy in the new restaurant, inspiration for the refurbishment was drawn from its former academics. While respecting the existing architecture, the design injected a strong sense of contemporary operational elements, and a new level of comfort.

The design also demanded high-quality finishes including velvet, brass, marble, lava stone, and soft lighting; with rich, warm colour tones and juxtaposing textures to create a luxuriant and welcoming ambience.

Playing a key role in the design, Unibox’s contemporary cubic glass unit was to house an extraordinary selection from the Royal Academy’s permanent collection of sculptures, while also acting as a room divider.