To accompany this year's Serpentine Gallery Pavilion, the Serpentine Galleries commissioned four other architects to design Summer Houses. Each 25-square-meter temporary structure was inspired by Queen Caroline's Temple, a neoclassical temple in Kensington Gardens designed in the 18th century. The Serpentine Galleries chose Asif Khan, Barkow Leibinger, Kunlé Adeyemi, and Yona Friedman to contribute designs, each of whom created their own interpretation of the original temple in uniquely fascinating ways.
When Asif Khan discovered Queen Caroline’s Temple was originally designed to catch the sun’s rays on the queen’s birthday, he decided his structure would form a line from the sun as it rises to Queen Caroline’s Temple, with 100 wooden posts surrounding two aluminum discs. Khan told Dezeen, “In my pavilion, these two pieces of polished aluminium recall that lost reflection of light into the space and connect the vista with the past and present.”
Founders of Barkow Leibinger Frank Barkow and Regine Leibinger drew inspiration from a mechanically-rotating structure designed by the same architect who designed Queen Caroline’s Temple. Their Summer House, constructed with wood, curves and twists and appears different depending on a viewer’s perspective. Barkow told Dezeen they view their Summer House as a prototype for a potential future project. He said, “…it was really about looping as a way of doing something, a way of making something that could have a structural and spatial idea…it’s something we could expand upon.”
Kunlé Adeyemi, founder of NLÉ, designed an “inversion,” offering a modern take on Queen Caroline’s Temple by distorting the original design. He said he essentially played with the form of the temple to evoke a “playful, contemporary interpretation.”
For his Summer House, Yona Friedman built on a project he’s been working on for years. Ville Spatiale is a concept for futuristic housing that allows occupants to design their own homes. Friedman used wire in his temporary exhibit, referencing his project from the 1950’s.
The Summer Houses and the 2016 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion will open to the public later this week until October 9, 2016.
Images courtesy of Serpentine Galleries, © Iwan Baan