THE SERPENTINE GALLERY - PARK NIGHTS PRELUDE - ON ARCHITECTURE

Bjarke Ingels, Kunlé Adayemi, Frank Barkow and Regine Leibinger, Yona Friedman and Asif Khan discussed their designs for the 2016 Pavilion and Summer Houses with Julia Peyton-Jones and Hans Ulrich Obrist, in a series of panels moderated by Vicky Richardson. 

Bjarke Ingels started his process by looking at what was already done in the other pavilions; the materials, structures and how the architect worked.

He kept the climate, tactility and strategy in mind while designing and searching for materials.

He not only thought like an architect but also like an artist.

The material he used in the end was glassfibre from a company called Lay Light in the middle of Denmark. The material reflects the light and gives a certain glow to the pavilion. It’s a light material that’s not yet used a lot.

His inspiration came from everyday life. He tried to make the ordinary extraordinary, driven by material and structure. The way the bricks are put together creates everything.

Everyone sees something else in the design; either a big gate, a glove fitting over the pavilion, a cave or a giant matrix. Ingels created a grand gesture that made the little lawn look like a big, heroic cathedral. The design unfolds a lot of possibilities and meanings depending on the perspective. The design has a certain quality of interaction, inhabitation.

On the other hand, it is also just” a gigantic play of sliding boxes next to each other. We design buildings that do what we say”, Ingels stated. Creating a place where people’s happiness can be expressed is one of the key aspects of his buildings. Focussing on human happiness allows you to celebrate and maximize human enjoyment. That’s why the design is so playful.

For me the pavilion is like a sexy pavilion that opens with a gigantic zipper. 

In the second part of the talk the designers of the Summer Houses talked about their designs.

Asif Kahn dug in Caroline’s and the temples history. His design is a game of orientation. It’s an analysis of the sun orientation. The temple was built in the direction of the sunrise on Caroline’s birthday. The table in the middle reflects the sun.

Kunlé Adayemi follows the rules of classic Architecture. He designed probably the most literal Summer House. His design reflects the rotation of the void. And is built like ruins found in nature. He respected the geometry. He researched the temple, looked at the plan and the forms and learned from the environment. He crossed the boundary between architecture, interior and furniture design and creates an open space for people to sit and hang out. For him, this project was also an opportunity to explore materials. The design is hard on the outside, covered with sandstone, and soft on the inside, covered with fabric.

Yona Friedman says that architecture is a composition of parts that mean something. He created a modular system for the user, the inhabitant.

Frank Barkow and Regine Leibinger took their Inspiration from rotating rooms. The pavilion offers a 360 degree view of the park. They built with the idea of walking through contemporary architecture. It’s an escape with infinity creating infinity and the unpredictable.