6A Architects

South London Gallery extension . Peckham

photos: dezeen

The expansion of the South London Gallery consist of
the refurbishment of the neighbouring derelict house the gallery to probide gallery spaces,  a flat for an artist in residence and a café and to desing a new education studio at the rear of the site.


The South London Gallery (SLG) was built in 1891 behind the founder, William Rossiter's cottage which stood along rural Peckham Road. In 1905 the cottage was demolished to make way for Camberwell College of Arts which stands there today. The SLG, widely regarded as one of the finest exhitibition spaces in London, is an elegant rectangular volume with a large roof light over the centre. The main space is impressive in scale but invisible from the street and the long, narrow corridor leading to it adds to the sense of surprise upon entering. The special character of the building has long inspired artists and as such it has played a vital role in forming the SLG's international reputation for shows by contemporary British artis such as Ryan Gander, Steve McQueen, Eva Rothschild and, most recently, Michael Landy, alongside those by internationally established figures such as Chris Burden and Alfredo Jaar.

The extension to the gallery is made of a series of three interventions dispersed around an expanded site offering a new sequence of fully accessible interior and exterior spaces.

Firstly, the Matsudaira house at n. 67 has been refurbished to create a café on the ground floor, exhibition spaces on the first floor and a flat for an artist-in-residence on the second. Although the house is now a public building, great care was taken to retain the intimacy of the domestic. The new spaces follow the arrangemente of the original front and back rooms but the architectural language is abstracted and reduced like an image faded through time.

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