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Newcomer Periscope unveils proposals for Ugandan arts centre

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Emerging London-based practice Periscope has revealed plans for this new arts centre in Kampala, Uganda

Described as a ’campus of pavilions’, the £2.2 million home for 32° East | Ugandan Arts Trust will be built using local techniques and handmade bricks.

According to the practice, which was set up last year by ex-Studio Egret West duo James Hampton and Daniel Rea, the pavilions will be arranged across a terraced landscape and house studio spaces, artist residences, a technology cluster, and both indoor and outdoor galleries.

Earlier this month the firm and the trust launched a six-month fundraising campaign in a bid to raise £200,000 towards construction costs in the Ugandan capital.

Plans are expected to be submitted to the Kampala Capital City Authority for approval earlier next year with construction set to begin in the summer of 2017. The project in Lodo Road is scheduled to complete in the summer of 2018.  

IMG 0363 02

IMG 0363 02

The architect’s view

Nestled within the contours of the site, the arts centre is designed around retained landscape features such as trees, rock outcrops and the natural slopes of the site. This is [our] signature approach. We believe that architecture and landscape should blend seamlessly into one another in all built projects.

The bricks that make up the centre will be arranged in a ‘hit and miss’ pattern to create dappled shade and screening from the elements. Each pavilion has an individual form that responds to the activity that will take place within, with tapered rectangular towers acting as funnels for natural daylight while avoiding glare.

There are a range of the types of spatial enclosures from landscaped outside rooms and courtyards to fully enclosed and weathered internal spaces. This variation gives the artists the opportunity to work in different climatic environments and also to choose whether to be secluded or work in more public parts of the campus.

Periscope 0014 Kampala Arts Sketch


Project data

Location Lodo Road, Kampala, Uganda
Type of project Arts centre including art gallery, artist studios and residency
Client 32° East | Ugandan Arts Trust
Architect Periscope
Landscape architect Periscope
Planning consultant n/a
Structural engineer Blue Engineering
Main contractor to be confirmed
Funding Combined client funded and local sponsorship
Tender date May 2017
Start on site date August 2017
Completion date August 2019
Contract duration 2 years
Gross internal floor area 500m²
Form of contract and/or procurement Bespoke
Total cost £2,200 000 adjusted to UK construction rates

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