West Cork Arts Centre
Competition submission for West Cork Arts Centre, Skibbereen, Co. Cork
Our approach to the design of the new WCAC Building was initiated by an analysis of the site context and its situation within the town of Skibbereen, having examined the brief and functional requirements of the new Arts Centre.
The site location in the centre of Skibbereen makes it ideally placed to realise WCAC’S objective to “revitalise and make vibrant the centre of Skibbereen as the art heart of West Cork”.
In examination of the site and its surroundings, it appeared to us that although it is at present inaccessible and almost hidden, there are important connections that can be made that will allow the new Arts Centre to make significant urban design contributions to the town, rather than being simply a stand-alone piece of architecture.
The architectural approach to the building, in general, is one of strong, simple forms arranged in a slightly unorthodox manner, giving the Arts Centre a clear, iconic, and instantly recognisable presence, while creating new visual connections to existing parts of the town together with links to the proposed development area of the Marsh beyond.
The proposed building takes the form of an L-shaped block enclosing two sides of a central space with another L-shaped block resting above at high level, cantilevering over this space and creating a covered courtyard effect, despite being very much open to the town.