Clare Hughes copyright John Dawson

Creative Director at Thinc, an exhibition and museum design studio in New York City. Formerly Partner in award-winning architecture practice  Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, London.

Storytelling is a much-abused term these days, but powerful narratives can change people’s lives - for good and ill. For the last 25 years I have pioneered the art of architectural storytelling in some of the most unusual places, from a medieval abbey to a brutalist arts centre and a Victorian pottery. My passion is to find the universal connection in each story I tell, using space, light, film and texture. To tell a story that has boots on.

I began in theatre and television and later in architecture and design. Buildings and spaces tell stories too: form, volume, light, materials and surfaces, and the relationships between all of these, are like so many characters and plot-lines in a great film or novel. So architecture and film have more in common than you might think, and for me the bridge has been to find the essence of a good story in all of them.

My role as Creative Director at Thinc Design is to serve each project and to serve the staff as powerfully as I can. Like an orchestral conductor or a magazine editor, it's my job to champion a project or a big idea, set the direction of travel, and then to hold the vision in place when it is buffeted by any number of storms.  All the while, I'm fundamentally aware of the needs of the audience, the aspirations of the client, the skills of the team and the bigger sense of purpose at the heart of the project. I love the combination of rigour, clarity and outlandish imagination needed to wrangle an unwieldy mash of ideas and designs into a powerful experience - whether filmic or spatial. 

 For a description of a range of film, architectural and curated projects please visit the Project page.

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