The installation of 82 dynamic liquid crystal windows to glaze two restored Victorian rooflights has been completed, as refurbishment progresses at the 195 Piccadilly headquarters of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA).
By improving facilities and doubling the building’s capacity, BAFTA will be able to dramatically increase its charitable programme. A world-leading independent arts charity, BAFTA works to support and promote the next generation of talent and break down barriers that make it hard for talented individuals to build careers in the creative industries.
Dynamic glass specialist Eyrise has partnered with BAFTA to provide instant solar shading for a newly constructed top floor at its Grade II listed headquarters in London. The project involved installing 27 tons of liquid crystal glass of varying shapes and sizes into the restored and raised Victorian rooflights.
Proprietary Licrivision liquid crystal technology enables Eyrise glass to be tinted to provide instant solar shading without compromising on natural daylight. The windows provide lightwellness – visual comfort, thermal regulation and colour neutrality – for occupants, while also helping to reduce energy consumption.
“New technologies are helping us transform and grow the infrastructure of our headquarters which in turn will enable us to expand our important work in supporting emerging and under-represented talent,” said Kevin Price, BAFTA’s Chief Operating Officer. “By raising the roof and re-integrating the rooflights with Eyrise’s innovative glazing, we are able to open up a bright new space and deliver a greater variety of initiatives, learning events and activities.”
The refurbishment revealed one of the hidden rooflights, built in 1883, for the first time since 1975 when it was covered to create a dark space for a 227-seat cinema.
“This major project is a testament to BAFTA’s progressive vision,” said Celine Glipa, CEO of Eyrise B.V.. “By integrating the latest technology to breathe new life and light into this iconic landmark, it is creating a superior stage for emerging talent.”
Designed by Benedetti Architects, the redevelopment work at BAFTA will be completed in autumn 2021.
“BAFTA chose us for our centrepiece idea to transform its capacity with a new top floor, created by raising and restoring the magnificent ‘lost’ Victorian rooflights to prominence,” said Renato Benedetti, Director of Benedetti Architects. “We knew this required an extraordinary smart glass solution. As our design developed, it was soon clear the only bespoke, innovative smart glass capable of elegantly resolving every technical and perceptual challenge to bring this vision to life was Eyrise.”
eyrise® Dynamic Liquid Crystal Windows is an innovative product from science and technology company Merck.
Eyrise glass uses advanced licrivision® liquid crystal technology developed by Merck to produce smart transparent windows that can be tinted to provide instant solar shading without compromising on natural daylight. The windows provide lightwellness – visual comfort, thermal regulation and colour neutrality – for occupants on demand, while helping to reduce energy consumption.
Architects and building designers worldwide use Eyrise to create bespoke glass structures and facades in a large variety of shapes, sizes and colours. Recent projects include BAFTA’s headquarters in London, Orkla City in Oslo, Merck’s conference centre in Darmstadt and Niemeyer Sphere in Leipzig designed by modern architecture pioneer Oscar Niemeyer.
Merck, Licrivision and Eyrise are registered trademarks of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany or its affiliates.
The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) is a world-leading independent arts charity (no. 216726) that brings the very best work in film, games and television to public attention and supports the growth of creative talent in the UK and internationally. Through its Awards ceremonies and year-round programme of learning events and initiatives – which includes workshops, masterclasses, scholarships, lectures and mentoring schemes in the UK, USA and Asia – BAFTA identifies and celebrates excellence, discovers, inspires and nurtures new talent, and enables learning and creative collaboration. For advice and inspiration from the best creative minds in working in film, games and television, visit www.bafta.org/guru. For more, visit www.bafta.org.
BAFTA 195 Piccadilly, owned by the Crown Estate, is a Grade II listed building that has been BAFTA’s headquarters since 1974. It was originally built in 1883 as a gallery space for the Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours, a medium then overlooked by the neighbouring Royal Academy of Arts.
BAFTA is currently redeveloping its iconic headquarters at 195 Piccadilly. The redeveloped space will enable BAFTA to dramatically expand its year-round work as a charity to find and support new talent across film, games and television, offer essential support to the industry and ensure that careers in film, games and television are open to all.
The redevelopment will double the building’s capacity, install state-of-the-art technology and create an entire floor devoted to BAFTA’s learning and new talent programmes, enabling BAFTA to support over 80,000 people to develop a career in the creative industries each year. It will also generate additional income which will be used to expand BAFTA’s learning programmes throughout the UK and globally. The new BAFTA headquarters will open in late 2021.
Benedetti Architects The redevelopment work at BAFTA’s headquarters has been designed by internationally renowned Benedetti Architects, founded by Renato Benedetti in 2016 following 20 years of award-winning success as McDowell+Benedetti Architects