14 July 2016
Newport Street Gallery is one of six buildings shortlisted for architecture's highest accolade, to be awarded by the Royal Institute of British Architects on Thursday 6 October 2016.
Born in 1996 out of its predecessor, The Building of the Year Award, The RIBA Stirling Prize is presented to RIBA Chartered Architects and International Fellows for buildings in the UK which have made the greatest contribution to the evolution of architecture over the past year. Other nominated buildings this year include Blavatnik School of Government; City of Glasgow College, Riverside Campus; Outhouse; Trafalgar Place and Weston Library.
Spanning five buildings, Newport Street Gallery took over three years to construct and is the realisation of Hirst’s long-term ambition to share his collection – which includes over 3,000 works – with the public. Designed by architects Caruso St John, the gallery spans 37,000 square feet, which also includes the restaurant, Pharmacy2. Its construction involved the conversion of three listed Victorian buildings, which were purpose-built in 1913 to serve as scenery painting studios for the booming local and West End theatre industries. After suffering bombing during World War Two, one of the galleries was rebuilt as a barrow-making workshop that supplied London’s flower-sellers. Two new additional buildings have been constructed at either end of the existing three, creating a gallery that spans half the length of the street. One of the central galleries has a height of 11 metres and the roof of the tallest building has been specifically designed to allow for the installation of large sculptures.