From a back bedroom desk to international acclaim – Bournemouth lighting design studio turns 10

By Sam Pither [email protected]

Published: November 8, 2023 | Updated: 8th November 2023

Michael Grubb Studio, the Bournemouth-based lighting design studio is celebrating its tenth year in business.

Michael Grubb Studio logo

It’s the kind of journey anyone starting a business dreams of.

When Michael started the company back in 2013 he was working alone out of a desk in a back bedroom.

In the ten years since he has garnered international acclaim, picked up multiple awards, and expanded to bring on a team of experts.

“Ten years on, the company has matured, we’ve retained, refined and developed our core identity,” Michael explained.

The studio lit up the scene early on, with a number of unconventional endeavours which included dressing their marketing manager up as a lobster, pitching the concept of George Clooney dressed as Santa opening their Gardens of Light Festival, and illuminating Durdle Door from a tiny vessel at sea.

Early success illuminated the path to rapid growth, leading to several high-profile, award-winning projects such as the Guinness Storehouse, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, and Bournemouth’s Gardens of Light Festival.

Michael Grubb Studio has completed a number of other local projects, including the Chine Forest immersive public artwork and an exterior lighting scheme for Bournemouth’s coastal gateway.

Further from home, the studio has worked on the Crown Jewels in the Tower of London, Meta HQ in London, the F1 Touring Experience, BBC Earth Experience, V&A Photography Galleries, Bath Abbey and the recently completed Jameson Whiskey Experience.

Micheal said: “Our approach continues to integrate our ethos; to innovate and create; provide knowledge and experience as well as to continue to build upon, and deliver, our commitment to people and planet.

“I remain ever conscious there is a continuous journey of learning ahead of us and have a profound desire and responsibility, to ensure that our lighting schemes do not harm the natural environment, a view shared by the whole team.”

Part of Michael Grubb Studio’s commitment to Dorset is evident in the pro-bono relationship they have committed to with Arts University Bournemouth to support emerging talent.

This sees them providing lighting design content for the Interior Architect course and supporting yearly interns.

This close working relationship has allowed staff to share skills and knowledge over the years and has provided the business with access to exceptional students who have joined the team on a full-time basis after their studies.

Michael concluded: “We look forward to sharing the future with our industry friends and clients, who have helped make the last ten years possible, and to whom we are immensely grateful.”

Read next: Bourne again! Dorset company plays key role in newest London landmark hailed as ‘iconic’

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