Founded in 1970 by the art collector and philanthropist Paul Mellon, the Paul Mellon Centre is an educational charity that promotes new ways of understanding British art history and culture. Based in central London, it publishes, teaches and carries out research in its Bloomsbury headquarters as well as through its online platforms. The Centre is part of Yale University and a partner to the Yale Center for British Art.
Wright & Wright were commissioned to expand and redevelop the Centre’s headquarters in a Grade 1 listed Georgian town house in Bedford Square, one of London’s most architecturally impressive set pieces. The redevelopment was prompted by a steady increase in the Centre’s research events, with lectures, seminars, conferences and study days all conspiring to generate visitor numbers that put pressure on the original building despite its elegant atmosphere and generous proportions.
Wright & Wright are an experienced company with rigorous standards. They are easy to work with and find creative solutions to problems.
Deputy Director for Collections and Publications, Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art
As a result of the remodelling, the Centre can deliver its programme of events more effectively for scholars and the public alike, with a spacious first-floor lecture room, together with a ground floor seminar space, both equipped with the latest audio visual technology. A catering kitchen was also be added to provide facilities for hosting conferences and research seminars.
By taking a lease on the house next door, the Centre effectively doubled in size. Both houses were completely yet sensitively refurbished, a key move being to knock through the dividing wall at four levels enabling an easy and efficient flow of movement between the two buildings. New seminar and meeting rooms were created on the upper floors, as well additional space provided for the Centre’s growing library along with a new exhibition space on the ground floor.