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SOL-ART Visions

Nicoletti, Eleonora; Upfest

SOL-ART Visions Thumbnail


Eleonora Nicoletti



Andy Council

Bex Glover

Dave Bain

Elaine Carr

Luke Palmer

Project Member


Building-Integrated Photovoltaic (BIPV) technology enables the replacement of conventional building envelope materials with photovoltaics (PVs) that generate electrical energy from sunlight. PVs can be integrated visibly or invisibly into roofs and facades and may be used to compose and display visual content on building exteriors.
The technology has seen improvements in performance, cost and visual characteristics like module forms, colours, and transparency, offering options for design customisation. Emerging PVs with enhanced efficiency, as well as lifecycle and visual properties, expand the potential of BIPV solutions. These may be used in façade retrofit projects to improve buildings’ energy performance, with design variations according to the context.
As the city of Bristol is rich in street art, questions arise about how PVs would visually relate to artworks if used in façade renovations. Photovoltaic façade designs may be combined with or conceived as public art creating new urban attractions and generating energy.
To explore this potential, we engaged the people of Bristol in envisioning photovoltaic facades for the city. We ran co-design workshops with local building design stakeholders and residents, facilitated by local artists who then developed illustrations of solar façade concepts from views expressed by participants.
This exhibition shows the artists’ visualisations of solar façade concepts for Bedminster that are outputs of co-design workshops. The broader Bristol community is invited to join the conversation about the visual design of solar façades for the city by expressing views anonymously through an online questionnaire.


Nicoletti, E., & Upfest. (2023). SOL-ART Visions. [Exhibition]. Exhibited at Tobacco Factory, Bristol. 17 July 2023 - 31 July 2023. (Unpublished)

Exhibition Performance Type Exhibition
Start Date Jul 17, 2023
End Date Jul 31, 2023
Publication Date Jul 17, 2023
Deposit Date Jan 31, 2024
Publicly Available Date Jan 31, 2024
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information The project 'Towards Solar Facades as Participatory Public Art' was Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), ​part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), under the Design Accelerator scheme (Grant Ref: AH/X003574/1). The engagement activities were coordinated by the project partner Upfest and involved the participation of the solar technology partner BIPVco.


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