Sussex artist teams up with students and leading UK sign manufacturer to develop the signage and wayfinding scheme for two new schools.
When Lewes, Sussex, based artist Will Nash was commissioned by Impact Art and West Sussex County Council to develop a ‘welcome’ and wayfinding signage scheme for the campus of two new schools – Southway Primary and The Regis School in Bognor Regis – he decided to take a fresh approach. Working in collaboration with students from the two schools and Signbox Ltd, the UK’s leading wayfinding sign manufacturers, Nash was able to develop a scheme that spans from tiny enamel door signs to the two steel chevron sculptures that stand in front of each school, the largest of which weighs over two tons.
Speaking about his approach to delivering his vision for the project, Will Nash commented, “As an artist working in public spaces, my work necessarily involves collaboration with all kinds of contractors and suppliers; Signbox were totally enthusiastic and fully committed right from the start and shared my passion for detail and quality of finish”.
The wayfinding theme chosen was centred on the way in which people orient themselves in physical spaces and navigate from place to place. The project brief stipulated that the results, in and around the two schools, must reflect the difference in scale and user, yet share a common thread. Furthermore it should consider the specific needs, context and age ranges within the two new school buildings and develop appropriate work in consultation with the two schools and their wider communities.
The chosen common thread was an arrow shape, woven through the sculptures and signs; it is consistently used from the main entrance signs, pictograms, room numbers, area / year identity graphics and murals together with direction signs across the entire campus. Nash added, “The arrow was the right motif for the project and echoed an ancient flint arrowhead discovered on the site during construction”.
Nash’s inspirational vision for the wayfinding sign design was a critical element to the overall success of the project, enriching the lives of the students, residents and the local community. Signbox were able to translate this vision for the scheme into a practical modular sign system to meet both aesthetic and durability requirements within a busy working school environment. Signbox also provide accessible, DDA-compliant signs for educational institutions, with a number of specialist processes that include information display in tactile and Braille formats.