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BFI seeks architect for Mediatheque revamp

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The British Film Institute is seeking an architect to overhaul its David Adjaye-designed Mediatheque viewing room on London’s South Bank

The winner of the £20,000 contract will draw up a range of experimental concepts to reinvent the reference facility which provides free public access to the BFI’s extensive film and TV collections.

David Adjaye created the popular Mediatheque attraction as part of a larger regeneration of the BFI’s South Bank complex – formerly known as the National Film Theatre – in 2007.

The project is the first stage in an ambitious bid to recast the free video archive as a ‘dynamic’ service available in libraries and public spaces across the country.

The announcement came shortly after the BFI revived plans for a new venue on London’s South Bank with a design team for the high-profile £130 million project yet to be appointed.

According to the brief: ‘Our long-term aspiration is to completely reinvent the Mediatheque experience, transforming it into a dynamic model that can be utilised in public spaces such as libraries and film heritage centres across the UK and wider.

‘The ambition is to have inspiring, versatile and friendly spaces to discover moving image.’

The document continued: ‘The short term opportunity is to experiment with new design concepts within our primary location at BFI South Bank and test alternative accessible and immersive models with our visitors to create a new, refreshable in-venue experience.

‘To design a fun place that will deliver a specialist service for researchers and allow anyone from casual to first-time visitor to feel confident to be curious, enter, linger and engage with the collections digitally.’

The project will refresh the Mediatheque interior and exterior appearance and upgrade its connections to surrounding facilities and the wider venue.

Dubbed BFI South Bank, the venue was created by expanding the former National Film Theatre into the neighbouring Museum of Moving Image which was deigned by Brian Avery in 1988.

Coffey Architects completed a new library for the landmark venue underneath Grade II-listed Waterloo Bridge four years ago.

The deadline for applications is 8 July.

How to apply

View the contract notice for more information

Contact details

Stephen Adams
21 Stephen Street

Tel: 0207 9574849
Email: stephen.adams@bfi.org.uk

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