Breathing Room by Anna Berry


This winter, Gloucester will come to light in unusual and unexpected ways as a series of pop up installations will appear across the city for you to enjoy. The first edition of Bright Nights will present a collection of intriguing and beautiful light installations, by local and international artists.

Breathing Room is an immersive art installation created by Anna Berry. Anna is a UK artist who often creates work in non-gallery environments. She enjoys creating large installations and often works with paper and movement.

The Breathing Room is located at Blackfriars Priory and Entry to the Breathing Room is Free.

Breathing Room is a curvaceous tunnel around three metres high and two metres wide that winds gently left and right for a distance of 16 meters. The walls and ceiling of the tunnel are lined with 28,000 handmade cones in a flexible white material called Tyvek, which has similar qualities to paper, but is harder wearing. The cones were made on kitchen tables in the homes of volunteers during the Covid-19 pandemic and we would ask you to refrain from touching them as they can get crushed.

As you make your way along the path, a gentle ripple passes through your surroundings. The walls and the arched ceiling seem to inhale and exhale with an almost imperceptible wave of movement. As you round a bend, the structure envelopes you and coloured light passes through the gaps between the cones, dappling the ground with light.

As you round a bend, the structure envelopes you and waves of coloured light pass gently across the walls and ceiling in time with the gentle ebbing and flowing of your surroundings; vivid purples, blues, greens, yellows and reds, pass along the length of the tunnel, as you go.

The movement of the structure is accompanied by a score of sounds as the cones rub together and creak and the mechanics of the movement whistle and crank around you.
The outside of the structure is as much a work of art as the inside.
The whole piece is suspended inside a metal framework, like a huge ribcage, with a network of bars, levers, cogs and chains, some constructed from repurposed bicycle parts. On the roof, groups of bicycle chains run through pedal and wheel cogs, pulling levers that gently lift and lower the walls of the tunnel.

The mechanisms was built by Clive Doherty, who is the artist and engineer who collaborating with Anna on creating the piece.

On Sunday the 7th November you can enjoy a VR Experience at The Breathing Room, book your time slot for this HERE

For those who would like a more relaxed or personal experience, we have allocated a number of bookable places for this and you can book those tickets here.

Please note that, on Thursday 11 November, Breathing Room is fully booked between 5:30 and 6:30pm.

For accessibility information, please click here.

You can also book a special Bright Nights VR experience on 7 November 2021, and get the chance to experience Breathing Room, Anna Berry's immersive installation, in virtual reality. Tickets can be booked here.

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Map & Directions

Breathing Room


Blackfriars Priory, Ladybellegate Street, GLOUCESTER, Gloucestershire, GL1 2HN
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Opening Times

Breathing Room (6 Nov 2021 - 14 Nov 2021)

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Blackfriars, GloucesterBlackfriars is a stunning example of a 13th century medieval Priory site, nestled at the heart of the waterside City of Gloucester.

This website was funded by Gloucester City Council and Gloucester Culture Trust through the Arts Council and National Lottery Heritage Fund, Great Place Scheme

Great Place Scheme           City Council

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