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The Design Museum Atrium Illuminated Sign Staircase Warm Light Architectural Lighting Design Consultants Nulty

Design Museum

Lighting a modern London landmark

This modern day, Grade II* listed architectural wonder will soon be the Design Museum’s new home and we were very excited to work on the concept and detailed architectural lighting design scheme including: galleries, library, offices, lecture theatre, retail and education spaces.

The key was to deliver a flexible lighting solution that’s sustainable and low-energy, gave the right amount and quality of illumination and minimised the visual impact of luminaires. Solid, in-depth design workshops with the architectural team allowed us to create a fully integrated solution to support the minimalist architectural approach and highlight the spectacular interior.

Projects like this nearly always come with complexities and this one involved the central atrium and its amazing tent-like, hyperbolic paraboloid roof. It might’ve looked incredible but it provided few mounting positions for luminaires, so we took our cue from the way daylight penetrated the space through the clearstory windows. And, as part of the intricate planning process we carried out obtrusive light studies and on site mock-ups of the proposed window treatments.

Images © French + Tye


The sheer scale and majesty of the atrium space. The double hyperbolic parabola is a stunning piece of architecture.

— Ellie Coombs

Project Team

Ellie Coombs


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