Ty Pawb, Arts & Cultural Centre, Wrexham, Wales, Refurbishment
Client: Wrexham Borough County Council
Ty Pawb (Everybody’s House) is a new model for an arts venue, which opened in April 2018 with a street parade through Wrexham, North Wales.
The scheme relocates Oriel Wrecsam within one of the town’s three market spaces, The People’s Market: an existing, purpose-built, precast concrete 1990's multi-storey car park and market hall. The new facilities include art galleries, market stalls, performance space, a learning centre, cafes and bars. Studios and meeting rooms for artists and gallery staff overlook newly created double-height spaces.
The project has required its architect and the Oriel Wrecsam team to rethink the civic role of cultural organisations, creating a new model which challenges the traditional art gallery environment and offers a looser and more experimental space that is rooted in the community and everyday life. Featherstone Young refers to this as the ‘baggy space’ concept, where designers and curators create a light touch framework which enables others to fill the gaps. This approach helps garner ownership and create a place that can be used habitually, and open up the potential of useful, meaningful experiences amongst a wider public.
The Arts Council of Wales and the Welsh Government are supporting the project.
“Tŷ Pawb is an exciting proposition; it creates new opportunities to a much wider audience than traditional arts centres… and should provide an exciting model for others to follow.” (Harry James, Architect Assessor for Arts Council of Wales)