Masterclass by Steve Messam Bigger Than A House (Exploring scale with inflatables)

In this masterclass by Steve Messam you explore real world scale; build something bigger than the table you’re sitting at, bigger than a car, maybe as big as a house. Using the architecture of air you will create innovative inflatable structures as temporary forms, exploring the built environment through playful interventions.

English environmental artist Steve Messam is a pioneer in inflatable art, having participated in renowned art festivals such as the Venice Biennale (2009). In the spring of 2023, his work was on display during BlowUp Art in The Hague.

Steve’s works are huge but also amazingly light. Inflatables consist of 99% air, blown into a shell of wafer-thin fabric. Steve explains that inflatable volumes must be large enough to have a strong impact on the environment. This makes people look with different eyes at places they usually already know well. “My art is purely aesthetic. Apart from that play with the perception of the passerby, there is no deeper meaning or story in it. So it may look weird or appear humorous,” he says (source).

Day 1 |

• Presentation – Steve will show you his approach to designing site-specific architectural installations
• Unveiling the assignment
• Developing skill-set – building some simple inflatable forms and working at scale

Day 2 | Building

• Short site visit to look at locations to work with – understanding the site and considering the wider environment
• Sketching ideas and building paper models
• start building full scale forms

Day 3 | Reviewing

• Fine tuning the designs and practical logistics
• Installing and presenting the pieces on site
• Documentation
• Reflection and feedback

Costs & tickets

The ticket price for students is €150,- incl. VAT
The ticket price for professionals is €230,- incl. VAT


For questions please send an email to

Summer School 2023
From August 15 to 24, Graphic Matters presents a Summer School in Breda. The Summer School consists of four masterclasses that are entirely dedicated to the theme Blow Up/Blow Out. Each masterclass will be given by leading international designers, artists or typographers. There is also a social programme with studio visits, tours and lectures.

This masterclass is made possible by the Keep an Eye Foundation, a Dutch foundation dedicated to talent development that supports various organizations nationwide. Read more about it here.

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