Architect to reveal Exeter’s new Deaf Academy plans inspiration
The lead architect behind the ground-breaking plans for Exeter’s new Deaf Academy will reveal the Design Team’s inspiration at an event at Exeter’s Royal Albert Memorial Museum on Wednesday 6th March.
Professor Alex de Rijke, founding director of dRMM and Dean of Architecture at the Royal College of Art, will explain how the award-winning architects use natural light, colour and space in their projects. He will discuss how this has influenced the development of an innovative design for the Deaf Academy aimed at those who communicate visually through sign language.
Guests will be able to see a model of the proposed building, the current plans and visuals, as well as the materials that will go into the multi-coloured façade. Careful consideration of daylight, views and acoustics have all been important in developing the designs, to ensure the spaces are appropriate for Deaf learners and support the use of sign language.
Alex de Rijke comments, "We have been on an important journey, working closely with students and staff to develop a sustainable vision for their new academy and student accommodation. The new building will be an exemplar, designed to support the very particular needs and aspirations of the Deaf community - both locally and nationally."
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The inspirational film, ‘A Sense of Space’, produced by Colourburn Media, outlining how the designs were created with input from students at the Academy, will also be premiered at the event.
As well as hearing more detail about the plans for the new Academy, guests will pledge their support for the Academy’s new build project by adopting the universally recognised ‘thumbs up’ sign. They will be invited to #beinspired on Twitter as they are treated to a brief introduction of Deaf Awareness and BSL fingerspelling.
Jonathan Farnhill, Chief Executive of the Exeter Royal Academy for Deaf Education says: “The event promises to be hugely enjoyable and informative. Deafness is often referred to as a 'hidden disability', and in some ways the Deaf Academy's work has remained hidden from view for too long. This event will enable people to discover the work we do. Most importantly, the event will look to the future, explaining what the new Deaf Academy will provide and the impact it will have on the city, and the region, once it is built.”
Main sponsors for the event are Brewin Dolphin and Ashfords Solicitors with support from Touchwood, which created the set and donated all the materials.
Brewin Dolphin Exeter has selected the Deaf Academy as their charity of the year. Richard Pike Divisional Director of Brewin Dolphin Exeter says: “We are delighted to name the Deaf Academy as our first-ever ‘Charity of the Year’ and to be a main sponsor of this event. As a trustee on the charity’s board I am fully aware of how important the specialist support and education provided by this worthy cause is; not only in the City of Exeter but across the South West region and beyond with residential students attending from all over the UK.”
Andrew Rothwell, Partner in the Commercial Property Department at Ashfords Solicitors adds, “We are delighted to be involved in the project to deliver the new Academy for Deaf Education. It is an extremely exciting project, for the charity, for the city, for the local community and most importantly for the students. We are proud to have played a part in securing the site that will transform the learning experience for many children and young people for years to come.”