For the past 15 years, The Serpentine Gallery in London has commissioned an annual display of architectural experimentation. Their temporary summer Pavilion is a world-renowned accolade and a chance for leading architects from across the globe to push the boundaries of modern architecture. Their brief: to create a fun and inviting space, with a café, for the public to enjoy. The catch: they only have six months to build it. This year’s hotly anticipated creation promises to be one the best yet. So why not head down to Kensington Palace Gardens this summer and join in the celebrations?
A psychedelic labyrinth
Following in the footsteps of architectural greats, such as Frank Gehry, Smiljan Radic and Oscar Niemeyer, 2015 is the turn of Spanish studio SelgasCano. With a reputation for playful designs and bold use of colour, their recently revealed designs do not disappoint.
Their offering is a chrysalis-like structure, formed through a mass of interlocking tunnels, each covered in layer upon layer of coloured see-through plastic. This polygonal design, vaguely reminiscent of a greenhouse, offers visitors multiple ways in, each giving a different journey characterised by colour and shape.
Once inside, the double-skinned design creates a “secret corridor” between the outer and inner layer of the pavilion, leading into a wildly colourful stained glass window-style interior. Inside there will be space to relax and explore, as well as a café where you can sip coffee, bathed in a kaleidoscopic light; as beautiful an experience as the gardens that surround it.
Experimental from every angle, it’s this level of creativity and design that has made the Serpentine Pavilion is one of the most visited architectural and design exhibitions in the world.
Who are SelgasCano?
The first Spanish practice to be chosen for the annual commission, SelgasCano, aka José Selgas and Lucía Cano, are considered rising stars of the architecture world. This award-winning studio have previously exhibited at the Guggenheim and MOMO, New York, and have big dreams for their first new building to be opened in the UK.
They specialise in semi-submerged buildings that live in harmony with their natural surroundings; just take a look at their office – a half-submerged, futuristic cube, lying within an area of beautiful woodland. “We think nature should take precedence over architecture,” says José Selgas, speaking on behalf of the married couple, who promise an ‘absolutely experimental’ pavilion that will ‘really embrace the garden’.
With a penchant for using cheap, off-the-peg components, assembled to an incredibly high standard, SelgasCano is a bold and exciting choice for this year’s Pavilion. Their work is characterised by the use of synthetic materials and new technologies, rarely used in architecture. Their use of a multi-coloured fabric membrane in this year’s design is a prime example of this, showing an exciting desire to create and build something that’s never been done before.
Come celebrate the 15th annual Serpentine Pavilion
Serpentine directors Julia Peyton-Jones and Hans Ulrich Obrist said they wanted a party Pavilion for this year’s 15th anniversary, and they look certain to get it. As well as being a space to relax, the Pavilion will host a variety of events throughout the summer. So why not make a day of it? Just don’t forget your friends. Share this article on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ and start planning your day out today.
Pavilion opens: 25th June to 18th October, 2015
Galleries open: 10am – 6pm, Tuesday – Sunday, plus bank holidays
Where: Kensington Palace Gardens
Nearest tube: Lancaster Gate or Marble Arch
For more information visit serpentinegalleries.org
Head down to Kensington Palace Gardens for an architectural display like no other. Are you planning on going to this event? Let us know on Facebook, Twitter or in the comment section below!
Image 1 – Serpentine Galleries
Image 2 – Serpentine Galleries