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University of Portsmouth presents 13 architecture and design projects


Dezeen School Shows: an acoustic solution made from ancient ship sails and lime is included in Dezeen’s latest school show by students at University of Portsmouth.

Also featured is an indoor playground that promotes different forms of play and a historic dockyard that has been transformed to include co-working spaces, tea houses and a botanical garden.

Institution: University of Portsmouth
School: Portsmouth School of Architecture
Courses: BA (Hons) Architecture, BA (Hons) Interior Architecture and Design, MArch, MA Interior Architecture and Design, MA Architecture: Spatial Design Practices, MA Architecture: Building and Heritage Conservation and MA Architecture: Landscape and Urbanism
Tutors: Paula Craft-Pegg – Head of School, Roberto Braglia, Nigel Simpkins, Guido Robazza, Belinda Mitchell, Oren Lieberman, Tarek Teba and Antonino Di Raimo

School statement:

“The Portsmouth School of Architecture embraces the importance of integrated and research-informed design, emphasising interdisciplinary collaboration.

“The school encourages exploration of the relationships between architecture, interior design, engineering, conservation, landscape and urban design and across the creative disciplines.

“This approach enables students to develop comprehensive solutions that address complex challenges, integrating diverse perspectives and expertise.

“By encouraging a wide range of design approaches, the school fosters a holistic view on social, cultural and environmental sustainability.

“Students are empowered to develop impactful designs that are responsive to the context and environment, actively engaging with the values and aspirations of communities while embodying a critical design ethos.

“BA (Hons) Architecture merges theory and practice to interrogate various ecologies such as environment, culture, economy, political and aesthetic. Students gain expertise in design, construction, sustainability, and history and theory, engaging in practical projects and acquiring industry experience.

“BA (Hons) Interior Architecture and Design explores how interior architecture can enable attitudes of care for people, buildings, communities and environment. ‘Thinking through making’ underpins the course through projects concerned with environment, materiality and adaptive reuse.

“MArch offers a test-bed to explore diverse design theories. Supported by staff expertise and research, it allows interaction with different physical and cultural contexts.

“All studios emphasise climate crises, social inequalities and the significance of place, advancing through targeted research and experimentation.

“In our MA Architecture degree courses, students augment their creative practice and research by specialising in alternative forms of architecture. These courses consist of Building and Heritage Conservation, Landscape and Urban Design, Spatial Design Practices or MA Interior Architecture and Design.

“Students engage in disciplinary-specific learning whilst also working collaboratively in a rich interdisciplinary environment.”

Collage showing a mixed-use building in Gosport, England

Haslar Tower by Majid Sallomi

“Located in Gosport, England, this final year architectural project crafts a captivating mixed-use building.

“The tower is seamlessly connected to the Royal Haslar Hospital with a glass-covered intermediate space, which flaunts four cantilevers that extend towards the sea, providing panoramic views.

“Enchanting garden spaces and scenic viewing decks are situated on top of each cantilever, finalising the vision to create Gosport’s illustrious focal point and architectural landmark.”

Student: Majid Sallomi
Course: BA (Hons) Architecture
Tutors: Leago Madumo and Gregory Martinez de Riquelme

Visualisation of renovated Buckland Wall in Portsmouth, England

Wake the Buck Up by Oscar Hopkins

“This project renovates the infamous Buckland Wall on Estella Road and Grafton Street in Portsmouth, England, opening an untapped opportunity for the significant International Ferry Port located nearby.

“The project transforms the M275 motorway into a tunnel, modernising the Buckland Wall and integrating a new kilometre-long park to create a cultural institution that accommodates the architectural heritage of the city.”

Student: Oscar Hopkins
Course: BA (Hons) Architecture
Tutors: Roberto Braglia and Dan Blott

Illustrated section drawings of a cultural centre

A Cup of Wilderness by Sara Ferreira Pestana

“This project proposes a space that celebrates global tea cultures, promoting cultural and social interconnectedness as well as strengthening the connection between people and nature within the urban environment of Portsmouth, England.

“Boathouse Four – located in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard – is renovated to feature a range of tea houses, a botanical garden and a co-working space, each facility complementing the others.

“The botanical garden showcases plants and other cultural elements from around the world for visitors to immerse themselves in the origins and development of tea.

“The co-working space includes reading spaces amongst nature and communal working areas.”

Student: Sara Ferreira Pestana
Course: BA (Hons) Interior Architecture and Design
Tutors: Rachael Brown, Enrique Moya-Angeler and Nigel Simpkins

Collage of a residential building set in the dystopian future

Surviving Dystopia by Kai Alexander

“This project is set in the dystopian year of 2300 where the world is in despair as we refused to listen to the warnings of global warming.

“The Hilsea Lines in Portsmouth, England, stands as a defensive structure. It is an extremely dense and highly populated city, built rapidly in a dystopian setting.

“A ‘social condenser’ will be constructed at the edge of Hilsea to control the population, formed through the study of science fiction medias and raw brutalist architecture.

“It will be an immeasurable space for people to settle and restart their lives, sharing their skills whilst escaping the traumatic global events that surround them.”

Student: Kai Alexander
Course: MArch
Tutors: Nicola Crowson and Tina Wallbridge
Email: alexander.kai95[at]gmail.com

Collage of different socio-spatial strategies to increase tourism in Colombia

Journey of Hope by Karolina Stephenson

“Journey of Hope is a series of urban socio-spatial strategies and opportunities, aiming to create community tourism initiatives to introduce positive changes within Ciudad Bolivar, a stigmatised neighbourhood in Bogota, Colombia.

“The concept is inspired by Ruta De La Esperanza who set up a guided tour in 2004 with the hopes to change people’s perception about Ciudad Bolivar, typically known for its crime.

“The Journey of Hope is integrated into Ruta de la Esperanza’s existing tour and its principles, aiming to avoid challenging issues that arise from tourism such as gentrification and uprooting.

“Inclusive design strategies based on adapting, repurposing, upcycling, regenerating, extending and reusing can be found along the proposed trail, all in collaboration with local makers, artists, architects and even chefs.

“Journey of Hope aims to promote much more than tourism, it aims to promote affordability, inclusivity and support local networks and economies to instil a sense of civic pride.

Student: Karolina Stephenson
Course: MArch
Tutors: Guido Robazza and Phevos Kallitsis
Email: karolinastephenson[at]gmail.com

Visualisation of an architectural intervention by the Venetian Lagoon in Italy

The Hydro-Cultural Centre of the Piave by Daniel Dehghani

“The Venetian Lagoon in Italy has been suffering for 500 years, its health depleting at a rapid rate. The objective of this scheme is to bring freshwater and sediment from the Sile river nearby into the Lagoon in order to restore it.

“To combat the rise of sea levels and the many other disastrous consequences caused by climate change, it is time for architects to design interventions that respond to climate change threats.

“This project aims to utilise a combination of landscape engineering and technology to create an architectural intervention that meets the needs of the Venetian people and, most importantly, restores the health of the Lagoon.”

Student: Daniel Dehghani
Course: MArch and MA Architecture: Landscape and Urbanism
Tutors: Antonino di Raimo, John Pegg and Simone Sfriso
Email: danieldehghani8[at]gmail.com

Sectional collage of an indoor community playground

Memories in Space by Michelle Leong

“Located at Wymering Manor in England, Memories in Space engages with material thinking and digital technologies such as LiDAR scans made in conjunction with the Centre for Creative and Immersive Extended Reality (CCIXR) at the University of Portsmouth.

“Wymering is a space that challenges the senses – this project has been designed to serve as a playground to fabricate a community through den building and soft play.”

Student: Michelle Leong
Course: MA Interior Architecture and Design
Tutors: Belinda Mitchell and Oren Lieberman

A man blowing air through a straw into a rubber glove that is tied around a glass bottle

Play to Save the Earth by Marvan Abed

“This project embodies the new materialist theory, exploring notions of assemblage, entanglement and intra-action.

“It uses oxygen in playful ways to animate materials, people and their engagement with issues relating to the systems we live within as well as climate change.”

Student: Marvan Abed
Course: MA Interior Architecture and Design
Tutors: Belinda Mitchell, Rachael Brown and Oren Lieberman

Illustrated section drawing of trees shading mycelium structure

Hinterland by Linnéa Jakobsson

“This project takes mycelium spores collected in New Forest National Park, England, and nurtures them at 18 Osbourne Road in Portsmouth, growing in sterile containers under close supervision to prevent mould contamination.

“The growth begins in pre-made frames that shape the biodegradable pieces. These pieces are later assembled with mycelium connectors on site.

“Meanwhile, horse chestnut and oak saplings are gathered from a nursery in Somerset, England. Community volunteers clean the site and plant the saplings, creating shade for the mycelium structure.

“After two decades, the mycelium structure begins to weaken while the surrounding nature thrives. Eventually, the structure biodegrades and nature continues its course, nourishing new generations of life.”

Student: Linnéa Jakobsson
Course: MA Architecture: Spatial Design Practices
Tutors: Oren Lieberman and Belinda Mitchell

Diagrammatic painting over plan drawing of a multi-functional inclusive space

Elements Unveiled by Linnéa Jakobsson, Inchara M Shetty and Emily Willmer

“Through a multi-sensory ‘transect’, the group established a site in Eastney, Portsmouth, England. They meticulously explored the area, mapping their journey with drawings, recordings, photos and videos.

“They found distinct sections – residential, green space and the beach – each evoking different emotions. The site included an abandoned building with a rich military history.

“Their design aimed to preserve the existing environment and history while developing ever-changing material conditions and incorporating renewable energy; fabric became a significant element, inspired by the wind.

“The multi-functional inclusive space, accessible 24/7, accommodates different schedules and interests with equal opportunities for the many local communities.”

Students: Linnéa Jakobsson, Inchara M Shetty and Emily Willmer
Course: Masters module: Integration of Transdisciplinary Experiences
Tutors: Oren Lieberman and Deniz Beck

Visualisation of the interior of an artist studio in Portsmouth, England

Aakri Kada: Exploring Cloth-Crete and Flexible Spaces in the Restoration of the Old Portsmouth Dockyard by Sharath Binu John, Calvina Ann Andrew, Krishna Murali and Joseph Puthenparial Mathai

“This project repurposes Storehouse Nine in Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard, into artist studios.

“This transformation of the 240-plus-year-old building aims to preserve its rich history and enduring legacy.

“Through a fusion of locally abundant lime and ancient ship sails, the team has proposed cloth-crete – a flexible yet sturdy material that serves as partition walls for both aesthetics and acoustics functions.

“Retaining the dockyard’s original structure, cloth-crete panels, set on sliding tracks, allow for intimate gatherings and the display of large artwork, functioning as versatile display units.

“Thus this project enhances the building’s functionality and interior aesthetic allure.

Students: Sharath Binu John, Calvina Ann Andrew, Krishna Murali and Joseph Puthenparial Mathai
Course: Masters Module: Work Based Learning
Tutor: Suzanne Fallouh and Milena Metalkova-Markova

Board showing an in-depth analysis of the Guildhall Square in Southampton, England.

Guildhall Urban Regeneration by Roy Clarke and Jack Sykes

“In collaboration with Portsmouth City Council, the students worked on an in-depth analysis of the Guildhall Square in Southampton, England, and the surrounding conservation area.

“They prepared urban regeneration strategies for the square and the surrounding urban and natural contexts informed by the identified architectural, urban and cultural heritage qualities of the place.

“Building on the urban strategies, they designed adaptive reuse approaches for the modern civic office building, considering its architectural and cultural merits as well as functional and environmental challenges.”

Students: Roy Clarke and Jack Sykes
Course: MA Architecture: Building and Heritage Conservation
Tutors: Milena Metalkova-Markova and Tarek Teba

Visualisation of a cultural textile exhibition and education space

Weaving Culture by Lemisse Al Baggou

“Growing up with a mixed ethnic background, I never truly felt a sense of belonging or fully experienced my Iraqi heritage.

“This project creates a space where Islamic and Arab culture can be celebrated and protected, designed for those who have been displaced.

“Islam has a rich culture in the arts, known for its woven textiles and delicate tessellated patterns.

“This informs the creation of Weaving Culture, a space designed to exhibit and educate about textiles, ceramics, arts and literature, situated within Boathouse Four in Portsmouth, England.

“Weaving Culture enables those from different cultural backgrounds to ‘weave’ together into a single community.”

Student: Lemisse Al Baggou
Course: BA (Hons) Interior Architecture and Design
Tutors: Rachael Brown, Enrique Moya-Angeler and Nigel Simpkins

Partnership content

This school show is a partnership between Dezeen and University of Portsmouth. Find out more about Dezeen partnership content here.


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