London is a hotbed for innovative architecture this summer, and the 10th Annual Serpentine Gallery Pavilion is the latest fascinating work to be unveiled. Jean Nouvel was commissioned earlier this year to design and build this summer's pavilion, which will host Park Nights, a special program of film screenings and talks as well as a cafe for the public. Pritzker prize winner Nouvel joins the ranks of some of the most prominent architects in the world with this commission to design the famed temporary pavilion.
Nouvel’s design creates contrast between lightweight materials and metal cantilevered structures, all of which are completely red — providing additional contrast with the surrounding green park. Red is an iconic color for Britain and is seen everywhere from traditional telephone boxes to post boxes and London buses. The pavilion is composed of bold geometric forms made from glass, polycarbonate and fabric structures with retractable awnings that create a versatile and adaptable space for the many different programs that take place there during the summer.
The pavilion, located in front of the gallery in Kensington Gardens, will operate as a public space, a café and as a venue for the Gallery’s acclaimed program of public talks and events, which attracts up to 250,000 visitors each summer. There is also a strong focus on the theme of Play, which is highlighted by traditional French outdoor table-tennis tables. Opening July 10th, the Serpentine Gallery Pavilion will be open until the end of October when it will be taken down. We admit that there really are not specific green features to speak of with Nouvel’s pavilion, but anything that encourages people talking and being outdoors is a good thing in our opinion.
Photo credits: Philippe Ruault