Modern Art Oxford extension by dRMM


Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

London architects de Rijke Marsh Morgan have completed an extension to the Modern Art Oxford by transforming a delivery yard into a gallery space and café.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

A painted and perforated roller-shutter encloses the space at night while apertures allow passers-by to view the space and any artwork contained within when the gallery is closed.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

The omission of façade opens the space up completely to the street, and directly connects the gallery to passers-by.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

The interior walls and ceiling are clad in timber and polycarbonate panels while the original tarmac floor of the yard, complete with yellow road markings, has been retained.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

The space provides street level access into the gallery and will function as a multi-use space and lobby.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

The following information is from the architects:

Modern Art Oxford
Oxford, UK

A redefinition of existing ground floor facilities with a new multi-use space for a flexible programme of films, performance events, installations and café bar.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

Modern Art Oxford’s brief to promote access to and use of the Gallery was met by dRMM with the transformation of an existing delivery yard into a new type of gallery space for the UK, a ‘storefront gallery’ venue.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

The new 5x15x5m ramped lobby is positioned as an installation work; not permanent, plastered or white, but carefully constructed from massive engineered timber and polycarbonate panels.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

Artists will in turn react to and transform this entry space with an ongoing programme of exhibits.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

The Yard provides a new entrance and overall image for the museum on a more active street frontage, with direct level access, in central Oxford. Streetscape improvements are envisioned with the scheme as catalyst.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

The Yard is intended to address the pedestrian or cyclist; shoppers and tourists are as welcome as students and regular gallery-goers.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

The deliberate omission of façade connects the gallery directly with the Oxford streetscape by day. At night, a specially painted and perforated roller shutter invites the passerby to view interior and exterior as a simultaneous artwork.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

dRMM designed the Yard from an idea by MAO Director Michael Stanley, and coordinated contributing design input of structural engineer, catering consultant and specialist LED lighting manufacturer.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

With contributing artwork for bar, furniture and shutter by Richard Woods, MAO and dRMM present gallery architecture as ‘useful art’.

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

Location: Oxford city centre, UK
Start on site: March 2010
Completion: May 2010
Client: Modern Art Oxford; Michael Stanley, Helen Shilton, Caroline Winnicott

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

Architect: dRMM Alex de Rijke, Satoshi Isono, Junko Yanagisawa
Artist: Richard Woods
Structure/M&E Engineer: Ridge and Partners

Modern Art Oxford by dRMM Architects

Cost Consultant: David Flower
Specialist Timber Contractor: KLH UK
Catering Consultant: John Conroy
Main Contractor: Knowles and Son

Timber, Polycarbonate, Paint

See also:


Clapham Manor Primary School by dRMM Sliding House by
More interior stories
on Dezeen

Dezeen Book of Ideas out now!

dRMM is included in our book, Dezeen Book of Ideas. Buy it now for just £12.

Posted on Friday July 9th 2010 at 2:11 pm by Catherine Warmann. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • grapes

    really impressed, go Rebecca!

    kinda looks like a cartoon, love it

  • Viv

    Nice, I actually miss taking my lunch there, the restaurant was really good

  • sammy

    a sexy solution to a simple space.

  • felix

    Really nice apart from how cold it’s going to be. Will be amazing in summer though.

  • ellen

    So simple – great treatment to the roller door!

  • Kristopher Adams

    The furniture does have a remarkable resemblance to WrongWoods from the Established & Sons collection…

  • I caught this last week, really wonderful, and fantastic use of otherwise dead space

  • jed_

    Kristopher Adams, i presume this is a collaboration with wrongwoods who designed the pieces for established and sons you are referring to. (in which case it has to be said that they did a great deal of the work here since the furniture and roller shutter is the main draw here). i do really like the space though. right up my street.

  • jed_

    actually i didn’t mean to slight the contribution of the architects themselves. i think the space is really beautiful and the detailing is fresh and had a kind of intent legibility and honesty- i especially like the way the lights are stabilised very simply with ropes and nails and the subtlety of the junctions between wall, ceiling and LEDs is exquisite.

  • Jonny

    I don’t think the changes represent a better experience for the visitor. While the old basement cafe was a cosy womb this is more of a draughty fallopian tube. The sloping floor does not make the space a restful one to dwell in and causes the furniture to tilt. The painted furniture has a faux post-apocalyptic feel with a dash of Play-School in the choice of colours. No doubt with time it will start to feel like home.

  • tanya telford – T

    i like this, (I keep thinking there’s something Dubuffet esk (Jean) about the Wrongwood collection),

  • roy

    or even Liechstensteinesque somehow