Nick Bell Design













About us

What we do

We are visual communicators designing for three dimensional interactive environments.

Most of the time –
we work with architects, curators and museum directors. Together, we try to make museums absorbing and inspirational places to be.

Some of the time –
we work with heads of marketing and communications. With them, we help hone the voice that best captures their organisation’s relationship with people.

Occasionally –
working with publishers, editors and writers, we make books, catalogues and magazines objects of beauty and substance.

The last ten years –
we have spent collaborating with architects, museum directors and curators on exhibition interpretation design, digital interactive/audio visual media design and wayfinding.

During that time –
we have developed a visitor-centred editorial concern for the voices and visual language of interpretation and interactivity within physical information-rich environments.

How we do it

By always aiming to –
make it easier and more appealing for people to strengthen the connections they have with an organisation (in our case, usually museums and visitor attractions).

By always striving to –
deepen this affinity by developing ways of communicating that spark interest, encourage participation and provoke action.

We fuel action by –
making visitor engagement tangible and intelligible through building distinctive graphic identities specific to the content each attraction offers and that serve the experiences to be had there .

These identities are –
interactive, interpretive, communication strategies played out through the design of exhibition graphics, digital interactive/audio visual media, networked media and wayfinding.

These strategies are –
cross-platform, conceived with every visitor's own experience and personal connections to the content in mind – and increasingly will be making heavy use of the content visitors bring with them.

Our team

Nick Bell
Founder, Strategic and Creative Director

Nick is an editorial designer who has spent the last 20 years collaborating with architects, curators and museum directors on exhibition design projects. During that time he has developed a visitor-centred editorial concern for the visual language and voice of interpretation and interactivity within social, information-rich, highly distracting, narrative environments such as museums. Prior to this, Nick was Creative Director of Eye, magazine, the collectable and critical graphic design journal. He is an experienced educator, occasional writer, speaker, Special Consultant to Eye and member of AGI (Alliance Graphique Internationale). From 2013 to 2016 he was UAL Chair Professor of Communication Design where he co-founded Early Lab, and partnered with Ezio Manzini on his Cultures of Resilience meta-project. Early Lab is a design for social innovation practice currently working with NHS researchers in youth mental health. Inspired by his work with Early Lab and the notion of a museum as an environment and practice for wellbeing, Nick is currently researching the use of design as part of a situated, place-based strategy for mental health prevention at the Royal College of Art, London. Drawing on thirty years of experience as a designer, Nick provides creative guidance and collaborative leadership to our team, our client’s teams, our project partners and their teams. He has responsibility for entrepreneurial / editorial / creative vision and for maintaining the quality of our output with a view to achieving the desired outcomes. A more detailed biography can be downloaded as a pdf from the Downloads section of this website.

David Sudlow
Creative Design Manager

David leads exhibition graphic design, environmental design and wayfinding projects. He is involved in projects from conception through to completion, working with clients to define scope and content as well as with contractors on details and finishing. He manages both creative output and project programming. With over 12 years experience in this field, his career started at Ralph Appelbaum Associates (RAA) before joining Nick Bell Design in 2007. In 2012 David relocated to Manchester but continues to work with Nick Bell Design on special projects for the museums and heritage sector. Notable career achievements include the award-winning permanent galleries at the London Transport Museum (for RAA, 2007) and the Great North Museum (for Nick Bell Design, in collaboration with Casson Mann, 2010), awarded Gold in the DBA Design Effectiveness Awards, 2011. David has worked for a range of clients including English Heritage, V&A, Science Museum, National Trust, The Greenwich Foundation, Wellcome Trust and IWM. He was an Associate Lecturer in Graphic Design at the London College of Communication (2004-8) and a Visiting Tutor at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna (2007). Born in London, David studied graphic design at the London College of Printing and communication design at the Royal College of Art.

Telli Nourkeyhani
Senior Designer

Telli is a graphic designer bringing experience in cross-disciplinary approaches applied to environmental design. She provides senior design support encompassing architectural graphics, branded environments, signage and wayfinding systems. She has been collaborating with Nick Bell Design since 2014. Over the years, Telli has worked on major international projects for leading design practices including Speirs + Major, Foster + Partners and OMA. Her history of collaboration with architects, urban, interior and lighting designers has provided her with an all-round understanding of the built environment and is evidence of her expertise in the integration of two-dimensional communication design with architectural space. Notable projects with Nick Bell Design include interior graphics for the global headquarters of a leading FTSE-listed company in London. Collaborations with others include London 2012 Olympics Lighting Strategy, wayfinding for Astana Expo 2017 in Kazakhstan, wayfinding and information graphics for Orbital Highway in Qatar, signage for Eastland Shopping Centre in Australia. She has an MA in Graphic Design from the London College of Communication. Previous to this she spent five years in professional practice in her hometown of Tehran in Iran.

Julie Riley
Business and Practice Manager

Julie manages the contractual and financial aspect of all of our projects as well as assisting with client management and liaison. Internally she also oversees the resourcing of projects and other organisational and administrative aspects of the day to day running of Nick Bell Design. She joined us in 2006 to oversee the Finance, HR, Legal/Commercial and Administration aspects of the company. Her experience equips her with knowledge of the business and the skills for communicating well with people both internal and external to the company. Julie keeps our projects and working relationships on track. She has a musical background as a performing/recording artist, following which she worked for six years within the cultural sector of the design industry in both administration and PR roles. Most of this time was spent working for Casson Mann, the museum and gallery exhibition designers, with whom we have collaborated regularly for many years. Born near Southend in 1968, Julie lives in central London with her husband and their three children. Her passions are still music, (writing, recording and live performance) being outdoors, people and connecting with communities.


Alliance Graphique Internationale (AGI), Nick Bell
Eye magazine editorial board, Nick Bell


All of our work is heavily dependent on interdisciplinary collaboration to succeed – especially our environmental design. Our long-established and growing network of collaborators gives us access to the best and most appropriate expertise, insight, talent and support out there. This is a list of the highly valued project partners we have had the pleasure to work with and the projects we worked together on.

Abell Nepp: architects in the science and education fields
– Wellcome Trust Genome campus projects

AllofUs: digital interactive strategy and design consultants
– Stanislavsky Museolobby
atmosphere: exploring climate science

Azman Architects: architects, exhibition and interior designers
Communicate exhibition

Casson Mann: exhibition, museum and interior designers
– First World War Galleries
– BNFL Visitor’s Centre
– Churchill Museum
– Nelson Navy Nation
– Stanislavsky Factory signage
– Great North Museum
atmosphere: exploring climate science
– Benjamin Franklin Museum
– Casson Mann website and identity

CCD Design & Ergonomics: design for human behaviour
– V&A Wayfinding strategy

Chris Chesney: project manager
– Stanislavsky Factory signage

Cogapp: digital media and user experience design group
– Great North Museum

Coombe Architecture: architects and exhibition designers
– This Was Tomorrow
– Posh
– The Heart
– Museum of the Post Office in the Community
– Voices from the Deep at the Postal Museum

Dan Bosin Associates: museum and exhibition project managers
– Benjamin Franklin Museum

Endpoint: signage design engineers and production consultants
– Stanislavsky Factory signage
– Great North Museum

Engage Productions: interactive software and hardware production
– Churchill Museum
atmosphere: exploring climate science

Fraser Randall: exhibition and museum project management
– Churchill Museum
atmosphere: exploring climate science

Hassell: architects and interior designers
– St James's Square office wayfinding, graphic interiors

John McAslan + Partners: architects, landscape architects
– Stanislavsky Factory signage

Made by Many: social media experts
– Manchester United
– Amnesty’s

Martin Lee Associates: print production consultant
– Come Alive! The Spirited Art of Sister Corita
– Show and Tell: A Chronicle of Group Material

Metaphor: architects, museum and exhibition designers
– new exhibition project

Nissen Richards Studio: architects, exhibition designers
– Nature’s Library, The Manchester Museum

muf architecture/art: architects, exhibition designers
– Gainsborough
– Art of the Garden
– Martin Parr retrospective

Nord Architecture
– Making Modern Communications tender proposal

Remer & Talbott: museum and exhibition curation
– Benjamin Franklin Museum

Soda Ltd: digital interactive designers and artists
– Churchill Museum

Terry Farrell and Partners: architects
– Great North Museum

Studio ZNA: lighting designers
– Nature’s Library, The Manchester Museum


Atlantic Books
Barbican Centre
British Council
British Postal Museum & Archive
Casson Mann
Chris Boot
English Heritage
Four Corners Books
Haymarket Publishing
Hayward Gallery
Imperial War Museum
Laban School of Dance
Laurence King Publishing
The Manchester Museum
Manchester United
National Portrait Gallery
National Trust
Newcastle University
The Royal Mail
Science Museum, London
Tate Publishing
Tate Britain
University of the Arts London
Universities UK
Victoria & Albert Museum
Virgin Classics
The Wellcome Trust
Warner/Chappell Music


DBA Design Effectiveness Awards 2010 Winner
Gold Award
for Great North Museum
(with Casson Mann)

MUSE Awards 2011
Honourable Mention: Interpretive Interactive Installations
for Atmosphere: exploring climate science

D&AD Awards 2010 Yellow Pencil: Writing for Design
for D&AD Awards 2010 Call for Entries Campaign
(with copywriter Tim Riley of AMV BBDO)

Arts Fund Prize 2010 Longlist
for Great North Museum

Design Week Awards 2010
Commended: Museums, Galleries & Visitor Attractions
for Great North Museum

National Lottery Awards 2010
Best Heritage Project shortlist
for Great North Museum

Culture Journal Awards 2009
Renaissance Museum Award
for Great North Museum

World Architecture Awards 2009: Best Interior
for Great North Museum

FX Awards 2007 Finalist: Exhibition Space
for The Heart

D&AD Awards 2006 Yellow Pencil: Exhibition Design
for the Churchill Museum

D&AD Awards 2006 Nomination: Digital Media
for Churchill Museum Lifeline

Design Week Awards 2006 Winner:
Museums, galleries, visitor attractions
for Churchill Museum

Design Week Awards 2006 Winner:
Interactive Media/information
for Churchill Museum Lifeline

Creative Review Annual 2006 Best in Book: Graphic Design
for Churchill Museum

Creative Review Annual 2006 Best in Book: Graphic Design
for Churchill Museum Lifeline

The 2006 Council of Europe Museum Prize
for Churchill Museum

The AHI (Association for Heritage Interpretation)
Interpret Britain and Ireland Award
for Churchill Museum

The THEA Award for Outstanding Achievement
for Churchill Museum Lifeline

Wallpaper* Design Awards 2006: Best Books of 2005
Louis I Kahn, Phaidon

Higher Education Information Services Trust (HEIST):
Gold Award for best prospectus
for London College of Printing

D&AD Awards 2003 Yellow Pencil: Exhibition Design
for BNFL Visitor's Centre

D&AD Awards 2003 Yellow Pencil: Applied Graphic Design
for BNFL Visitor's Centre

Art Directors Club of Europe Gold Award
for BNFL Visitor's Centre

The PhotoEspaña Book Prize
for Martin Parr, Phaidon

Design Week Awards 2000 Winner: Print
for British Council tablecloth

Design Centre Germany: High Design Quality
for Eye magazine

International Society of Typographic Designers Awards:
Certificate of Excellence
for London College of Printing prospectus design

American Typographers International Association
Gold Award
for BBC Schools Television typographic interior


Exhibition design

Exhibition media



Editorial design


When we write something worth sharing we post a link to it here.



Company profile

06/12/16: NBD_4of6_ExhibitionDesign_Past_2016 (39712 kb, .pdf)
06/12/16: NBD_1of6_ExhibitionDesign_Recent_2016 (20662 kb, .pdf)
06/12/16: NBD_5of6_Wayfinding_Past_2016 (11509 kb, .pdf)
06/12/16: NBD_2of6_Wayfinding_Recent_2016 (4640 kb, .pdf)
06/12/16: NBD_6of6_GraphicInteriors_Past_2016 (3681 kb, .pdf)
06/12/16: NBD_3of6_GraphicInteriors_Recent_2016 (11369 kb, .pdf)


30/11/16: David Sudlow (519 kb, .pdf)
16/06/20: Nick Bell (401 kb, .pdf)
16/01/17: Telli Nourkeyhani (105 kb, .pdf)
21/01/11: Julie Riley (143 kb, .pdf)

Project PDFs

21/01/11: Museum of the Post Office in the Community (1113 kb, .pdf)
21/01/11: Great North Museum: wayfinding (1335 kb, .pdf)
21/01/11: Che Guevara: Revolutionary & Icon (1327 kb, .pdf)
21/01/11: Gainsborough (1211 kb, .pdf)
28/01/11: Great North Museum: follow-up (1260 kb, .pdf)
21/01/11: Bodelwyddan Castle (1370 kb, .pdf)
21/01/11: Atmosphere: Exploring climate science (1357 kb, .pdf)
21/01/11: The Heart (1059 kb, .pdf)
21/01/11: Great North Museum: exhibition graphics (1361 kb, .pdf)
21/01/11: Stanislavsky Factory (823 kb, .pdf)



Nick Bell Design
49 Wellington Row
London E2 7BB

+44 (0)20 7253 4015
07950 269 292

Work with us

We work with specialists from many fields on every single project. The multi-media and environmental nature of our work demands it. Are you an architecture practice, 3D design studio or digital/interactive agency? We are always interested to hear from you. We team up frequently to make joint contributions to tender returns that are regularly successful. Find quite a few of your competitors listed on our site under ‘Collaborators’ here. To arrange a meeting, call us or email Nick Bell.


The content that appears on this site is the digital and intellectual property of Nick Bell Design. Any use of said content requires the direct permission of Nick Bell Design. © Nick Bell Design, London 2020.


You are currently using an older browser that can only display a basic version of this website.
Please upgrade or use an alternate browser to see the full version.