At the heart of the development is a new public square. Designed as a continental-style piazza featuring cafes and restaurants, the area has become a focus for eating and dining in the city. A glass pavilion, which houses two new restaurants forms the centrepiece of the square, and is also the site of one of the development's most exciting public art commissions.
Six glass panels, each measuring 4137 mm by 1748 mm, have been installed on the facade of the pavilion featuring the work of Iranian-born British artist Katayoun Dowlatshahi. Inspired by the sacred architecture of Exeter Cathedral, and its close proximity behind the square, the artist has created a series of 'windows' which echo the notion of a medieval rood screen. In the same way that cathedral windows are intended as apertures to heavenly bodies as well as being focal points for personal contemplation, the glass panels bring to a secular space the opportunity for peaceful reflection while at the same time emphasising the ephemeral nature of light.
The cathedral is a living monument and the glass pavilion is, by association, a rood screen obscuring and simultaneously revealing this sacred space. The designs appearing on each glass panel, applied through a process of hot enamelling and silk screening, also carry references to the city's network of medieval subterranean aqueducts.
Architect: Panter Hudspith Associates
Screen printing: Proto Studios Ltd