Art, Science and Visual Thinking

CelLab is a pavillion space aiming to create a collaborative environment for users across art and science disciplines which will inspire ideas and promote co-creation. Leading to heightened learning in the art school and a cultural awareness within the science community. The space aims to connect artists and scientists by supplying a combined space for both learning and socialising.

This proposed space in the university is valid as the sense of community and sharing has been lost between departments within the school. From interviewing users many are unaware what is happening among others also studying at Dundee and the link between their art degree and a science degree. There is very little sharing of knowledge across disciplines which is hindering education.

This is a significant investment for the university as it will increase the learning of students through social sharing of knowledge in a collaborative space. It will encourage students to work for longer producing a higher quality of product. It will significantly increase learning and connections between the art school and science community. Collaborating in this informal manner allows for ideas to flow across diciplines in a way which does not happen at Dundee University presently.

Special thanks to Alan Prescott, Paul Harrison, Morag Martin and Amy Cameron for their guidance and input.




‘To satisfy his inner sense of orientation, man needs to situate himself in space’


How do we know where we are when we are hovering between two different spaces? How to we situate ourselves within this threshold space in order to determine our orientation in the world? My installation aims to explore the ‘in-between’ space and notion of self and sense of location.

I was inspired by megalithic monuments and their measuring of progressive lunar and solar cycles against the earth in order to allow people to have a sense of time and space. Their use of complex maths and stone markers have many different functions and relationships with the surrounding environment. It also shows that although these monuments were built around 3000BC they still demonstrate that humans have an innate sense to understand our surroundings and where we stand in the world.

Taking inspiration from these mathematical patterns I have created this emotive object in response to the notion of self and sense of location. My installation demonstrates a 3D map of how these megalithic monuments were constructed and also highlights our connection to our surroundings as human beings. By exploring the term threshold I aim to initiate a debate as to how each person specifically perceives their sense of place whilst standing on an ‘in between’ or transitional space.

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UNIT Future Workplace concept

UNIT (user cantered, natural, intuitive and timeless design) is a space which aims to break social barriers and increase collaboration in the future workplace. The office space is designed to allow fluid movement throughout the space and boost social encounters in order to create partnerships, share skills and disperse hierarchy. Unofficial discussions and meetings often plant the seed for a good idea, as architect Primo Orpilla states ‘great things happen over lunch’.

Primo Orpilla of Studio o + a outlines a set of guidelines for creating a successful office space. I have chosen to adopt these guidelines and create a conceptual office for studio o + a to inhabit in the future. Orpilla’s characteristics champion natural relationships between each section of the space to allow for different types of work to co-habit the same internal structure. It puts particular focus on flexibility within the working environment to allow for collaboration.

Sketch Modelling process

Taking these principles forward there are no personal offices within UNIT in order to break down the hierarchy within the company. Businesses have ‘flattened out’ by 25% over the last 25 years, losing several layers of management in favor of a more fluid structure increasing interaction and discussion. In this new plan ideas can flow along horizontal, vertical and diagonal paths throughout the firm. UNIT provides a space which accommodates this shift in management style towards the future workplace.

Walking up the ramp to the entrance you appreciate the light which is filtered through the wooden slats, creating a lattice work of shadows and light. This effect will change in response to sunlight and weather creating an ever changing, inspiring entrance to the workplace. Upon entering reception you can gaze down at visitors and staff enjoying hot drinks and food in the café or look upwards towards a group of individuals in deep discussion in the circular conference room. Proceeding down the curving ramp into the café you look down to see architects hard at work on laptops and model making alike. There is a bubble of chatter flowing up from below with the loud hiss of the coffee machine from the cafe breaking up the sound. Proceeding in the elevator to ground level you notice the organised clutter of models housed along various shelves within the studio. At one end of the ground floor light floods in through a workshop and brightens the private, individual conference rooms. At the other end of the studio soft lighting guides you to a quiet, individual work area set deeper into the ground. It is a cosy, quiet space with soft lighting and furnishings. Perfect for reading and relaxing.

UNIT reflects the principles outlined by Primo Orpilla but also integrates the values of Studio o + a into the space. They aim to connect and empower organisations but also integrate intuitive design in order to show sympathy to the user. UNIT reflects these values through material honesty, harmony between the building and user, flexible spaces and unobtrusive design to fulfil a purpose whilst benefiting user.

Empathetic Re-Design of the Ninewells Hospital Environment.


Design Team: Jessica Ross (Interior and Environmental Design), Kirsty Meechan (Interior and Environmental Design), Nadine Franz (Interior and Environmental Design), Katrina Steven (Product Design),  Katryna Callaghan (Product Design), Laura Geyer (Graphic Design), Sandhya Prem (Medical Student).

Ninewells Teaching Hospital is one of Scotland’s busiest hospitals with the concourse area being one of the largest footfalls for the city of Dundee. As a group we were tasked with re-imagining the experience of those thousands of people who pass through the hospital every day. We focused on the environment experienced by patients, carers, staff and students who have just been diagnosed with cancer. And also those who have just received bad news.

Below is a  summary of our research into the effects of cancer and the emotional journey  of the sufferer.


The current hospital environment is very 1970s and many wards struggle to cope with the increasing demand for beds and facilities. Talking to specialist nurse Lesley Taylor and ENT Surgeon Rodney Mountain we discovered the true extent of the problems with the lack of suitable space for patients.

Looking at existing spaces we liked the idea of bringing nature into the hospital to reduce the clinical appearance of the wards.inspo for new space

Below are experimental sketch models.

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We propose an intervention space which will provide a sanctuary for those struggling or coping with bad news within the hospital. The space is situated on a disused roof space which in turn would link the ENT clinic to the wards at the back of the hospital supporting chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Below is an experience map of the proposed space.

experience map

The space would provide an outdoor space for patients to use as a place for a private conversation or simply as an escape from the hospital environment. This reflection pavilion would allow users to cut through towards the back of the hospital without entering the main concourse. This gives more privacy to those grieving loved ones or those needing time away from the public eye.

Below are conceptual visual representations of our ideas.

ENT ward before change:EXISTING SPCE COLLAGEENT ward after change:NEW SPCE COLLAGE

App Design:

Patients who have just been diagnosed with cancer may feel overwhelmed and the clutter of the information pack they are presented with does not help. We have proposed a digital solution in the form of an app. On this app patients can see all their information clearly displayed on their phone. The app contains contact details to nurses and doctors in case of emergency, links to information about cancer, a calendar showing their appointments laid out clearly, progress tracker showing how far the patients have come in their treatment and a digital map of Ninewells guiding them to their appointments. This will allow patients to carry more information than contained in the pack on a simple app which both the patient and their family members can access with a log in.

We have also re packaged the information the patient receives on paper for those not willing or able to use the app efficiently.

Thanks to:  Maggies Centre, Ninewells Hospital, Lesley Taylor, Rodney Mountain and all patients that shared their experiences with us. 




Distance Distortion

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Distance Distortion is a space which alters perceptions of distance through a play on linear perspectives to abrogate condescending attitudes of the art school. The existing space on level 5 of the Matthew Building is an elongated, brutalist, concrete structure with the dominant lines and volumes running horizontal in the space. In order to break up the linearity, triangle partitions are placed throughout the central volume to alter foot-fall and play on perspectives and vanishing points within level 5.


Columns and walls are all slightly off-line or rotated in a way to create a funky, unorthodox feel, hinting at the individuality and identity of the art school. Duncan of Jordanstone aims to promote its originality and creative expertise and this design reduces institutionalized feel of the present art school and champions the creativity and tight social circle within Duncan of Jordanstone.



Outside the lecture theaters stands an orthogonal seating area ideal when waiting for a lecture to start or simply as a place to pause and rest.  Looking on across from the lecture theaters is a cluster of curving, snaking sofas which provide a place for social interaction and relaxation. By providing a comfortable social space fully accessible for all university students it will begin to blur the detachment of Duncan of Jordanstone and void all preconceptions of art school education.

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