The University of Salford in Manchester, England, located its new learning center for media students near six national British Broadcasting Company (BBC) departments and “hundreds of independent creative, digital and media organizations.” Wrapped around and rising above the modern MediaCityUK Living Lab’s two-level atrium is a floating lightweight fabric sculpture, Ribbon, symbolizing the way media communication connects the world. Fabric Architecture Ltd., Gloucestershire, England, designed, manufactured and installed the three-dimensional Ribbon, which is more than 70 feet long and dominates the entrance to the Lab’s state-of-the-art digital and broadcast studios.
The ArchiClad patented modular framing system that Fabric Architecture used in Dublin Airport’s Terminal 2 gives the Ribbon its curves and twists. Three sections composed of 23 individual frames were bolted together in a rotating configuration and wrapped in white, lightweight tensioned fabric. The sculpture, wired through the suspended ceiling with slender, nearly invisible stainless steel cables, appears to be floating in air and leading students into their new media careers.