ONE Creative environments (ONE) was selected as one of four RIBA Chartered practices for the Show Windows artistic exhibition as part of the Coventry U.K. City of Culture 2021 celebrations.
RIBA Competition Entry
Designed and constructed with a collaborative approach, combining artworks by ONE’s RIBA Chartered architects and artists Ruth Moilliet and Rachel Ella Taylor, the installation entitled ‘Peace in Perpetuity’ recognises moments of conflict in Coventry’s past. Direct links to the city’s heritage and Coventry’s Peace Trail celebrates peace and the contrast it brings.
The concept for the artwork draws on these aspects of Coventry’s heritage to create a series of symbols that are used to visualise a cycle of growth, fragmentation and rebirth that is characteristic of every living thing in the natural world and fundamental to The Botanist’s floral branding.
Each of the plants in the artwork have been carefully selected: roses are a reference to the fact that Coventry was an important place during the 15th century War of the Roses. The other flowers have been chosen for their references to peace, healing, love and harmony – apple blossom, cosmos, the lotus flower and violets to name just a few.
The wings of the phoenix rising from the ashes symbolises the rebuilding of Coventry after World War II, as celebrated in George Wagstaff’s bronze statue and Coventry’s Coat of Arms. Sharp shards of glass in chaos are depicted in direct contrast to the organic and rhythmic forms of nature and represent pieces of the Cathedral’s window that were bombed during the Blitz.
Most elements of the installation are made from recycled single use household packaging and industrial materials, that might have otherwise gone to landfill, and consideration has been given to how the artwork will be relocated and recycled afterwards.
The piece is layered onto the ‘shop window’ using vinyl and 3D elements so that it can be appreciated from all angles. Mirror and white vinyl elements on the glass balcony will draw the eye up from the square and animate the space though the movement of light. Subtle elements of the artwork featuring reflective fabric will also glow when illuminated at night.
The colour palette has been carefully considered with white as the main colour due to its’ association with peace, and some greys. Highlights are in blue, which is Coventry’s own colour and also the colour adopted by Coventry City of Culture.
Our clients can always rely on ONE for a creative solution to a challenge and we are passionate about providing sustainable options for our clients. Here we wanted to create something beautiful and inspiring, which has a lasting legacy after the celebrations, from materials that would have otherwise gone to landfill.
We believe in a collaborative approach for all that we do. ONE’s clients enjoy our one-stop-shop service, however, our teams also collaborate well with other design teams to benefit a client’s project. Here our architects partnering with artists Ruth Moilliet and Rachel Ella Taylor brought our collective strengths together to bring another dimension to the piece.