WestKing students’ prize-winning artwork unveiled at London site

A picture of staff and students from Westminster Kingsway college and dar Group staff at 150 Holborn

On Thursday 17 October, creative students from Westminster Kingsway College saw their colourful designs unveiled on a prominent hoarding outside the future headquarters of global engineering consultancy organisation, Dar Group.

The hoarding is part of a set of exterior hoardings that wrap around the whole site on the corner of Grays Inn Road and Holborn – one of London’s busiest junctions – and will be seen by hundreds of thousands of people over the next two years, while Dar Group’s new London headquarters are being built.

The hoarding, on the upper Grays Inn Road section of the site, was designed by a team of three first-year Digital Arts and Photography students: Patricia Gallego, Charlotte Allcock and Annie Koyce. They won a design competition, to a brief set by Dar Group, which asked 15 of our students to come up with a design for a hoarding on the theme of ‘Connection’. The concept of connection and collaboration is very important to Dar Group as its new building is designed to enable the group’s different companies and teams to connect and collaborate on world leading projects.

Winners Patricia Gallego, Charlotte Allcock and Annie Koyce with their hoarding

The competition tasked students with designing “a visual statement that portrayed the inspiration, ambition and vision of the new building”. Using skills that they will need in their future careers in the creative industries, the students analysed the brief and worked up their designs, which were judged by Dar Group’s project team.

The winners were announced in April and the hoarding itself has now been printed and installed at the site. On Thursday 17 October, WestKing staff and all the students who entered the competition were able to see the hoarding in place as well as have a tour of the building site.

Still in its early stages, the construction phase is due to last approximately two years and at its peak, around 170 people will be employed on-site in various construction trades. The building’s shell and core is due to be completed in July 2021, with the interior design fitted out by October 2021. When it’s finished, the building will be 8 storeys (30 metres) high and will house all Dar Group’s London-based companies and teams.

Westminster Kingsway’s Employability Lead Carlo Liu said: “This project is just the first in what we and Dar Group both hope will be a long-term partnership that will enable many of our students to boost their employability and gain experience in built environment professions such as engineering, design and planning.”

A spokesperson from Dar Group said: “The winning design in our view reflected all that the Dar Group and indeed our new headquarters in London is all about, Collaboration and Connectivity. We were delighted to see the standards by all the students’ teams, which made judging of the winning team all that more difficult, but congratulations should be paid to all. It has been a great start to the relationship between Westminster Kingsway and the Dar Group and we look forward to more collaborative projects with the college for years to come.”

Lecturer in Digital Imaging Paresh Parmar said: “We like to thank Dar Group for providing us with a very exciting inspiring live project brief for our group of students to engage with and respond to – offering a unique opportunity to experience working on a real project during their studies. It was exciting to be able to see the winning hoarding design turned into a long wall installation, and very interesting to see the construction site that lies behind it. The students have been inspired by their trip today and I am looking forward to working with them in this, the progressing second year of their course.”

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