Turner Contemporary Gallery

Margate, Kent
Kent County Council
David Chipperfield Architects
R Durtnell & Sons
Arts and Leisure

Project Scope

  • Entrance lobbies and glazing
  • Gallery room doorsets
  • Internal glazing

Project Awards

RIBA Stirling Prize Shortlist (2012)
RIBA Regional and National Award (2012)

Conde Nast Traveller Innovation and Design Award, Reader’s Choice Award (2011)

Civic Trust Awards, Commendation (2012)

This signature project designed in memory of the late artist, Turner, is situated on the seawall of Margate beach where the inspiration for his famous paintings was received.

Key Challenges

  • Demanding specifications for finishes and visual intent.
  • Complicated building control interface to meet current regulations.

The Brief

Turner Contemporary is situated on Margate seafront, Kent and is a new build art gallery inspired by the English painter, JMW Turner. With a challenging building specification designed to withstand the forces of nature dictated by it’s very positioning, the internal glazing requirements were equally challenging in their own way. With spectacular views of the sea and the building being significantly naturally lit, the internal material palette and attention to detail was key as would be required to withstand a high level of scrutiny.

Colorminium’s brief was to design and supply the access strategy through the building with a series of large doorsets and internal glazing that would facilitate large works of art being moved around and positioned.

Our Approach

Due to the required opening sizes within the building, a steel framing system was adopted and developed to suit the high usage environment. Designed into an RC frame with exposed internal finishes at points, the attention to detail in choosing sightlines that were fitting yet worked with the building control strategy was key. This was successfully achieved with both the intent being maintained and the function workable.

The Result

A very stunning and contemporary finished product is impressive and fitting to the building environment. Shortlisted for the 2012 RIBA Stirling Prize Award, the building is truly iconic and lives on to the legacy that inspired it. Visited by HRH The Duchess of Cambridge 11th March 2015, the building is and will remain a focal visiting point in the area.