National Gallery Company

Brought on board to deliver a full design and build service, Hart Miller Design were asked to radically transform the National Gallery Company’s working environment. We instigated a change in office culture, allowing teams to connect and collaborate more effectively.

NGC’s central London offices needed some serious attention. The large civil service furniture, files and boxes filling the space meant teams were working in silos – and many couldn’t even see each other. A recent staff engagement process made it clear that staff wanted a change to make it somewhere they felt happy to work.

This wasn’t just about refreshing the space, our brief was to improve its functionality and make the teams feel more connected, enhancing interaction to strengthen workplace culture.

The design had to reflect who they are as a creative organisation – within a strict budget. Once we’d addressed the vital functionality elements, we injected some creative flair to invigorate and inspire. The artists’ colourwheel – painted on the reveals of 26 windows along the perimeter of the building – is a vibrant centrepiece that also helps with zoning and wayfinding, complemented by tonal and textural patterns in the flooring.

Delivered on time and on budget, the new space has been a big hit with staff, enhancing collaboration and streamlining working processes along the way. “Since we’ve been in here, there’s been a wonderful lightening of mood,” says Julie Molloy, National Gallery Company’s managing director. “The way the space is being used makes it feel much more airy, lively and open than it used to. Colleagues come down from the Gallery, even a year later, and say how much they like our space.”