Collective Architecture to design ‘ground up’ development for Scottish Sculpture Workshop

Scottish Sculpture Workshop (SSW) has announced plans for a major capital project to upgrade its Lumsden workshop spaces and site in collaboration with Collective Architecture.

Collective Architecture to design ‘ground up’ development for Scottish Sculpture Workshop

Photo: Erika Stevenson

The project will see a ‘ground up’ development that utilises local materials, skills and knowledge, and foregrounds environmental sustainability and functional spaces for artists throughout the design and construction.

SSW director Sam Trotman revealed the redevelopment plans for the first time during a two-day celebration last weekend to mark SSW’s 40th anniversary.

Collective Architecture is a practice with a focus on community and sustainability, which often works with artists to realise projects. 

SSW was set up in 1979 by artist Fred Bushe as a shared making facility for artists and since then thousands have visited across the years, as a place renowned for supporting collective learning, living and making.

Artists from all disciplines and practices have worked in the shared studio and workshops with support from the SSW teams, making new work, experimenting with material and process, and exploring the wider ecological, socio-economic and political concerns of SSW’s rural locale.   

In 2018, SSW, together with consultants Bonnar Keenlyside, carried out a review of SSW’s existing facilities, assessing the condition of the assets and their suitability for current and future activities, users and audiences.

The resulting feasibility study concluded that there was a need for upgrading of the site so that the facilities could be considered fit for purpose and meet organisational and artists requirements and ambitions.

Ms Trotman said: “SSW started with the desire, vision and hard work of artist and educator Fred Bushe to create a space that commoned tools and skills for other artists to live, make and learn together.

“Like everything at SSW the development of the new workshops will be rooted in these founding beliefs. We will work with artists, technicians and users to ensure these workshops continue to be places where relationships are made, material experimentation is foregrounded and new worlds are conjured into being.”

She added: “We are pleased to have appointed Collective Architecture to join us on the journey, their values around sustainability and community make them the ideal partner to work with us, our collaborators and communities to reimagine these spaces at SSW.” 

Ewan Imrie of Collective Architecture said: “Collective Architecture are delighted to be working collaboratively with SSW to develop this project. We are very much looking forward to learning about the technical processes and creative explorations that occur at SSW and helping to shape a new future for the site that enhances its potential while preserving the characteristics that make it so special.”

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