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When in London: Serpentine Pavilion 2014 by Smiljan Radić

Posted by MJC. Filed under Editor's Picks

When in London: Serpentine Pavilion 2014 by Smiljan Radić 1
When in London: Serpentine Pavilion 2014 by Smiljan Radić 1
When in London: Serpentine Pavilion 2014 by Smiljan Radić 1

Inside the Serpentine Pavilion

When in London: Serpentine Pavilion 2014 by Smiljan Radić 1When in London: Serpentine Pavilion 2014 by Smiljan Radić 1When in London: Serpentine Pavilion 2014 by Smiljan Radić 1

In case you happen to take a stroll around Kensington Gardens in London, you’ll notice that an alien-looking ship has somehow landed on Serpentine’s lawn. The bulbous-looking structure, however, was conceptualized by non other than Chilean architect Smiljan Radić, the least-known among other global designers who have been invited for the past 14 years for this experimental annual commission. Raised up from the ground over a series of rugged quarry stones, the cylindrical structure is constructed from a paper-thin layer of white fiberglass, reminiscent of paper mâché wrapped around a balloon, its translucent structure attracting visitors “Like a moth to a flame.” Radić gave the structure a hollow center, creating a central courtyard open to the sky. Inside, there are various openings that form balconies, offering great views out over the gardens.

Designed as a flexible, multi-purpose social space, the pavilion has a café situated inside. On select Friday nights between July and September, the pavilion will become the stage for the gallery’s Park Night series – site-specific events bringing together art, music, poetry, literature, etc.

When I visited one afternoon, it was bit hot to linger inside the cafe of this pebble-looking blob. But once inside, or when seen at night, it glows with a yellowish tinge, its fibrous surface giving it the look of shed skin.

Serpentine Pavilion will be open until October 2014. Admission is free

 

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