SSE Hydro, Glasgow

Project: SSE Hydro, Glasgow

The technical services team at Lucas has developed a striking ultramarine paint for the architects Foster + Partners to decorate the new SSE Hydro entertainment arena at the Scottish Exhibition & Conference Centre in Glasgow that has recently opened.

Foster + Partners who designed the building worked with famous graphic designer Per Arnoldi who wanted major internal surfaces decorated in a specific strong ultramarine colour to create a dramatic effect for visitors. But although this colour has been a long time favourite of artists over the centuries, it is not normally available in large quantities for commercial painting.

A special pigment that produces the required bright, clean, “red” shade of blue originally came from Afghanistan. Our chemists sourced quantities of the pigment from the Far East and mixed it with a perfectly clear vinyl matt base and a special formula of thickeners to produce exactly the right colour for the architects with the correct performance qualities for covering the substrates of the new building.

The result is a stunning visual internal appearance for the arena that complements the design of the building and creates the effect envisioned by the architects. A fine example of Lucas once again bringing solutions to the building design process.