Innovative sculpture solves practical issues for Bristol Royal Infirmary

Made from 270 acoustic baffling panels suspended in the hospital atrium

A new acoustic baffling sculpture designed by Studio Weave is creating a pleasant and supportive environment for visitors, patients and staff at the Bristol Royal Infirmary.

The sculpture uses standard acoustic baffling materials in a new way to minimise noise and provide additional patient privacy. Additional benefits of this innovative installation are that it provides interest and distraction, animating the impressive hospital atrium and welcoming and inspiring visitors to the hospital.

Managed by arts and health consultants Willis Newson, the striking yet functional artwork creates a visual centrepiece to the atrium of the new 7 storey ward block. Suspended above the hospital’s busy Medical Assessment Unit, the sculpture, made from acoustic baffling panels, absorbs sound from the activity on the ground level, whilst providing additional privacy for patients by shielding sightlines from the upper floors.

“The sculpture works on many levels; it’s a stunning piece of artwork which creates a visual focal point for the space, but it also solves a lot of practical problems that hospitals have to resolve,” explained Deborah Lee, Chief Operating Officer and Deputy Chief Executive at the Trust.

The sculpture is inspired by the Terrell Rope Works, a family-run rope and twine business whose house used to sit on the hospital site. The design takes its cue from the dynamic, splaying strands of the rope industry. Made from 270 acoustic baffling panels, the sculpture's funnel-shaped design allows patients, staff and visitors on the ground floor to still benefit from the light that the atrium provides.

“We wanted the atrium space to mirror the high quality of care patients would receive within it. The sculpture achieves this and creates a welcoming environment for patients, staff and families,” said  Deborah Lee.

The sculpture has been funded by the hospital's charity Above & Beyond’s Golden Gift Appeal which is raising funds for the creation of a calming, uplifting and supportive environment for patients, visitors and staff through artworks to enhance the redevelopment of Bristol Royal Infirmary.

The sculpture is inspired by the Terrell Rope Works, a family-run rope and twine business whose house used to sit on the hospital site.      As well as animating the ward block atrium, welcoming and inspiring visitors, the sculpture reduces noise levels and provides patient privacy.


“The sculpture makes the atrium area calmer, so that what can be quite a stressful environment is a nice place to work.”

Dr Emily Lawton
Bristol Royal Infirmary