Architectural pavilions: architects packing a big punch with small structures
From provocative responses to socio-political issues, to solid pillars erected at the heart of communities, pavilions – whether permanent or transient – allow architects to experiment with materials, passions and concepts. Providing meeting points and shelter, they are socially minded centres for activity, debate and celebration – challenging people to integrate, interact and approach their environment in a new way. Here’s our ongoing pick of the best of the finest architectural pavilions across the globe...
Constructed for the 2019 Horst Music Festival in Belgium, this pavilion was the result of a 10 day workshop exploring construction, materiality and detailing. Porto-based Fala Atelier, featured in the Wallpaper Architects’ Directory 2019, joined forces with KU Leuven for a series of lectures, documentaroes and site visits that led up to the completion of the music stage pavilion. Participants in the lab included a range of people including students, architects, crafts people, artists, painters and woodworkers. The architects describe the pavilion as ‘half toy, half temple, half sensible’.
This pavilion that opened alongside the Chicago Architecture Biennial 2019 tests out a more sustainable alternative to the ‘ubiquitous urban concrete slab’. Pioneering a new fabrication technique to tackle the carbon footprint of concrete production, this pavilion used advanced robotics to reduce material used and waste generated. The result was 20 per cent less concrete used in comparison to a conventional system. ‘The design of Stereoform Slab expresses a more intelligent allocation of material, evocative of forms in nature. When applied to the entirety of the built environment, this technology can pave the way to a more expressive, sustainable, and innovative future of architecture,’ says Scott Duncan, SOM Design Partner. Photography: Dave Burke
Andromeda Reimagined: A Sanctuary in Deep Playa
Burning Man, Nevada
This ornamental shade pavilion was designed for Burning Man by John Marx, co-founding Design Principal and Chief Artistic Officer of Form4 Architecture, who worked in collaboration with artists Mary Graham and Mischell Riley of Bay Area art collective Playa Muses. The team was inspired by the Burning Man art theme of ‘Metamorphosis’ and reimagined the Greek myth of Andromeda into a story of female empowerment. The five-sided pyramid stretches 26 ft tall and is made of CNC-milled plywood with a steel structure. The patterned plywood walls evoke a starry sky, while exterior fins echo the swirling cosmos. Photography: Hannu Rytky
Steam of Life
JKMM and Sauna on Fire collective
Burning Man, Nevada
This circular sauna landed in the desert for Burning Man, bringing the Finnish cultural phenomenon to Nevada for a healthy dose of bathing, detoxing and spiritual purging for all Burners. Marcus Kujala, Hannu Rytky, Päivi Aaltio and Samppa Lappalainen of JKMM were behind the design for the concept driven by interdisciplinary collective Sauna on Fire. The minimal, timber pavilion embraces both shade and natural light. A circular passageway lead to the "löylyhuone" steam room, and instead of a dip in the Finnish sea, visitors relaxed in an oasis of shade. Photography: Hannu Rytky
Maich Swift Architects
Maich Swift Architects has designed a rooftop theatre in east London by the canal for the third annual ‘Antepavilion’ commission run by Shiva Ltd and the Architecture Foundation. Inspired by the home of Monsieur Hulot in Jacques Tati’s 1958 film Mon Oncle, the three-storey rooftop theatre is made of a laminated veneer lumber structural frame and facade of painted canvas panels. The pavilion will be the site of a two month programme of performances and events for the Beacon Festival.
Museum of Architecture’s Wooden Parliament
In London’s King’s Cross, this seven metre high open-air celebratory pavilion is constructed out of a series of blown-up wooden knots. Inside, a row of steps face each other to create platforms for debate and conversation. Commissioned in collaboration with the London Festival of Architecture with materials supplied by Spanish timber company Finsa, the pavilion has been designed by Christina Díaz Moreno and Efrén Ga Grinda of AMID.cero9, who wanted to show how architecture can serve as a mediator. ‘It has been conceived as a displacement of a private interior in a public space: an immersive room wrapped with an ornamented dress,’ say the architects. Photography: Luke Hayes
The Circe Pavilion
Designed to create a space for community engagement in Liberty Park, Dublin, this low-cost temporary pavilion commissioned by Dublin City Council will house a season of artistic events for the summer. The structure’s design was influenced by industrial steel structures found on the shipping docks of the river Liffey. Sustainability was considered with a limited number of columns used for minimal impact on the land and designed for ease of disassembly, with materials distilled down to the minimum.
Award winning artist Wolfgang Buttress has created a pop up pavilion at this year’s Glanstonbury as part of the festival’s Greenpeace Field. The structure is a striking 30m diameter woodland dome, made from over 7000 locally sourced Sitka Spruce posts. The piece can be entered from various sides and visitors can wander through and explore the 3.5m high wooden lenticular screens inside. The immersive experience is dedicated to the crucial role of the honey bee in nature, while the pavilion’s afterlife will see it become a ‘giant bee hotel’. Photography: Mark Hadden
Shrine of Whatslove
Located in the structure in the rural area of Zhejiang, this pavilion is ‘China’s first all carbon-fiber structure’ , robotically woven over 90 hours into a triangle shape. The form of the pavilion opens up a discussion about what love is today: ‘Love should be a beautiful and pure thing, but in reality it is always wrapped in layers of matter,’ say the architects. The pavilion is on a woodland trail frequented by city dwellers at weekends, and was commissioned by Fengyuzhu for their first Cultural and Creative Complex, Fangyukong guesthouse project. Photography: Creatar Images
Designed as a response to a call for creative pavilions and objects for the ArchBuhta festival at the Baikal Lake in Siberia, which has been running since 2007, this pavilion invites users to take a breath from the pace of daily life. The timber frame is a cube-shaped puzzle based on 50 centimetre modules. One side is a bench, while the other side has a table and two seats, and inside through an arched entrance there is another sheltered bench. Allowing daylight to enter, while protecting the interior space, the dividing walls and roof are made of cellular polycarbonate.
In the Kaiserpark in Krefeld, a new pavilion has arrived to celebrate the centenary of Bauhaus. Düsseldorf artist Thomas Schütte has designed an octagonal wooden exhibition space that takes visitors through the history of Bauahus in Krefeld in three cabinets. Krefeld, the home of Haus Lange and Haus Esters designed by Mies van der Rohe, claims an important place in Bauhaus history as the centre of the German silk industry. The pavilion will be the starting point for architectural tours of the town, as well as an evening event space for documentary screenings on the history of Krefeld, which attracted many Bauhaus affiliates to live there, combining the artistic and economic interests of Bauhaus theory. Between the 1920s and 1960s, Krefeld was home to Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Lilly Reich, Johannes Itten, Georg Muche, Elisabeth and Gerhard Kadow, Immeke Mitscherlich, Max Peiffer-Watenphul and Hans Volger. Photography: Michael Dannenmann
Coachella Valley, California
A series of pavilions inspired by the form of the Burkinabè baobab tree were designed by Kéré Architecture for this year’s Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. The Burkinabè baobab has a hollow trunk that develops holes or ‘sky lights’ in its structure as it grows. This was the inspiration for the ventilated, light-filled interiors, that provided cool sanctuaries for festival-goers during Coachella. The 12 pavilions, made of steel structures and clad with colourful timber panels, varied in size with the tallest reaching 19m high and the largest created by a grouping of three structures together. The title ‘Sarbalé Ke’ is translated as ‘House of Celebration’ in Moore, a language spoken in parts of Burkina Faso, where architect Francis Kéré is from. The radial layout of the pavilions reflected the urban plan of Kéré’s birthplace, Gando. Sarbalé Ke will soon relocate to a permanent location in the Eastern Coachella Valley. Photography: Iwan Baan
Pezo von Ellrichshausen
Palazzo Litta, Milan
Chilean architectural duo Sofía von Ellrichshausen and Mauricio Pezo, of Pezo von Ellrichshausen, brought architectural reflections into a palazzo courtyard for Milan Design Week. Their mirrored pavilion titled ‘Echo’ feeds off its baroque surroundings, bouncing images off stone colonnades into the void of the courtyard. Inside, a patch of sky is framed by the shape of the pavilion, inviting a moment of contemplation for visitors. The pavilion was part of ‘The Litta Variations / Opus 5’ exhibition curated by MoscaPartners and located at Palazzo Litta in Milan.
La Foresta dei Violini
University of Milan, Milan
As part of the ‘Interni Human Spaces’ exhibition, Piuarch paid tribute to a forest lost during a storm in 2018 that ravaged more than 12 million trees on the Alps through a pavilion concept by Nemo Monti. The Paneveggio Forest suffered immensely, a forest known as Stradivari’s Forest because of the use of the wood there to make the best acoustic violin sound cases. The pavilion is made of rough wood from trees broken in the storm – two large spruce trunks with their roots suspended in the air form the shape of a bridge, supported by an architectural easel made of worked red spruce wood. Photography: Saverio Lombardi Vallauri. Courtesy of: INTERNI magazine
Space Encounters and Creative Holland
Palazzo Cleric, Milan
Offering an oasis of calm in the midst of Milan Design Week chaos, this pavilion created a physical journey through space inside its walls by interpreting a vision of a museum of the future. Dutch collaborators included photographer Reinier van der Aart, pianist Joep Beving and digital artist Jan Robert Leegte. Designed by Amsterdam-based multidisciplinary architects Space Encounters, the pavilion took the form of a deconstructed series of rooms that enveloped the visitor and aimed to match the experience of visiting a musuem building. Photography: Lorenzo Zandri
AHEC, Waugh Thistleton Architects and Arup
University of Milan, Milan
Made of sustainable American tulipwood combined with innovative construction methods and lighting design by SEAM, this pavilion originally popped up at the London Design Festival 2018. The reconstruction for Milan Design Week revealed how modular constructions, engineered timber and reconfiguration can provide an architecture that can be re-used and repuposed in many contexts. The design challenges how we build our habitats and asks us to rethink how we understand architecture to be able to combat the biggest demands of today including housing and climate change. Photography: Saverio Lombardi Vallauri. Courtesy of: INTERNI magazine
From shipyard to courtyard
University of Milan, Milan
Sanlorenzo, leading shipyard for the production of yachts and superyachts founded in 1958, interpreted traditional craftsmanship and innovative values of the brand through a pavilion design in Milan. Piero Lissoni, art director at Sanlorenzo, designed an abstract form as a 1:1 scale reinterpretation of the hull of an SX112 yacht. Moored at the ‘Interni Human Spaces’ exhibition that took place across the courtyards of the University of Milan, the pavilion also carried with it the announcement a new model that will be presented by Sanlorenzo in 2020.
New Office Works
West Kowloon Cultural District, Hong Kong, China
Winner of the inaugural West Kowloon Young Architects and Designers Competition Pavilion, this punchy timber structure is located on the waterfront promenade near the newly opened Art Park. Paul Tse and Evelyn Ting of New Office Works were inspired by the immediate environment of the pavilion: the timber columns made of imported Pinus Slyvestries, echo a patch of young seedlings in the adjacent tree nursery and inside stepped layers for seating and performances reference Hong Kong’s hilly topography. The competition, judged by an all-star panel of James Corner, Sou Fujimoto, Thomas Heatherwick and Aric Chen, was created to provide an opportunity for emerging architects and designers from Hong Kong to build a project inspired by the local environment and culture. The sloping polycarbonate roof creates both porous and sheltered space through its angle for versatility of activities. Open from 9am to 9pm everyday, the pavilion will stay put for six months, providing an ideal spot for sunset views across the harbour. Photography: West Kowloon Cultural District Authority
Nguyen Khac Phuoc Architects and Dang + Partners
Thanh Chuong, Nghe An, Vietnam
Nguyen Khac Phuoc Architects and Dang + Partners are behind the design of Module +, a new pavilion in Vietnam. Sat adjacent to the water at Than Chuong Tea Island (a series of small hills weaving through the Thanh Thinh and Thanh An communes of Vietnam’s Than Chuong district), this pavilion was designed to be a resting spot and stopover for local farmers, in turn encouraging connectivity and gathering amongst the farming community. The lattice-like structure of the pavilion is constituted of over 2,000 plastic and wooden pieces, which were shipped to the site by boat and assembled by the area’s locals within three days. Designed to be freestanding and flexible in terms of movement and installation, the pavilion leaves minimal impact on its site, while gently striking out from the green landscape. Photography: Trieu Chien
Pergola in Luotuowan Village
Luotuowan Village, Hebei Province, China
Drawing on the particularities of the remote site and the nature of the local vernacular – the village was mostly built through reclamation of mountain and wasteland – the architects decided to work with a particular set of construction techniques. Inspired by Richard Buckminster Fuller’s ‘dymaxion’, which advocates maximum gain from minimal energy input, they explain, the team aimed to create something contemporary and solid, but also efficient and clever. LUO Studio decided to echo nature and use wood as the main construction material for their pergola. The timber used was reclaimed from demolished buildings in the area, and as a result the different wood block sizes used give the structure its unique character. This way, says the team, the pavilion both draws from local architecture and the surrouding natural landscape. Luotuowan Village is a small, sleepy community on the foot of the north side of Taihang Mountains of China’s Hebei Province; yet now it has also found a firm place on the world architecture map too, thanks to a new pergola structure by Beijing based architecture firm LUO Studio. Designed for the local residents as a place to rest, relax and take shade during long walks, this pavilion structure is part of the government’s injection of funding to the region, to support the small village’s growth and regeneration. Photography: Jin Weiqi
Architects Marcelo Sarovic and Jeannette Plaut of Sarovic_Plaut Architects, in collaboration with architect Vladimir Arredondo, have created this temporary folly that attracts visitors to the entry point to a fair in Bicentenario Park in Santiago, Chile. Constructed of steel, the pavilion has a tent-like shape, featuring a vaulted nave draped with MetalScreen, a metallic mesh skin by Hunter Douglas. The park is one of the city’s most well-known leisure spots, running alongside the Mapocho River. The pavilion celebrates the movement from the park, into the fair through a journey of colour, light and shadow. The red colour creates an extreme contrast with the green of the park, yet also brings a dappled experience of shade on a sunny day. Photography: Leonardo Finotti
Studio Weave, Hato and Jay Cover
Studio Weave has collaborated with graphic designer Hato and illustrator Jay Cover on ‘33’, a new pavilion on London’s Greenwich Peninsula. The project celebrates the growth of the area as a creative community. Anchored at the end of Phoenix Avenue with views overlooking Greenwich’s Central Park, the pavilion is a space to contemplate the construction of the new ‘Design District’ in the area, a neighbouring one-hectare patchwork of creative industry outlets to be completed at the end of 2019. The three-storey pavilion architecturally hearkens back to domestic Georgian design, reflecting a row of remaining terraced worker housing. It’s constructed of Douglas fir and jointed with timber pegs, all of which were sustainably sourced from UK forests. Bright yellow steel staircases and railing wrap around the interior, inviting visitors to climb and explore the rooms. Each floor features illustrations and graphics that highlight various domestic objects, including a kitchen with utilities, a study with desks and chairs and a bedroom. A two-dimensional ‘garden’ furthers the experience beyond the pavilion, further questioning a Londoners’ experience of different types of domestic space today.
Photography: Jim Stephenson. Writer: Luke Halls
Pop-up Social House
This social summer time pavilion popped up in the Xintiandi leisure district in Shanghai. The inviting bubblegum pink space was designed to encourage social interaction in the urban zone and to celebrate community. Aberrant Architecture reference the traditional hearth through the design, a place that has been a warm hub for sharing and spending time together throughout history. The contemporary take on this concept features sculptural ‘chimey-pieces’ where books and magazines are stacked for public enjoyment. The soft geometries of the forms were designed to comfortably sculpt to the body in various positions while they relax and recline to browse some printed matter. ‘Combining the function of an outdoor library with the trope of the domestic hearth, the ‘Social House by XINTIANDI’ can be read as a social catalyst which allows visitors to explore how we can be social in a small, public space,’ says Aberrant Architecture cofounder Kevin Haley. Photography: Xintiandi
Make Architects’ has designed a monocoque structure in Aldgate, London, that is a pavilion hosting a social-enterprise cafe and a multi-functional community space. The 325 sq m space has a single storey above ground and has utilised part of the former subways to accommodate a basement level for plant, back-of-house facilities, kitchens and toilets. The pavilion is part of the City of London Corporation’s transformation of the Aldgate gyratory. The design speaks to a first pavilion Make was commissioned for by the City of London in 2008 which is an information centre located outside St Paul’s Cathedral. The pavilion is made of Corten cladding panels that form a rigid structural skin. The faceted surface and angular design connects it visually to its forerunner at St. Pauls. The roof folds down to meet the Yorkstone paving at just three triangular support points, with glazing in between. Inside, geometric white laminate timber panels are layered and punched with slots to aid acoustics. Two large asymmetrical rooflights bring plenty of light into the pavilon while roof overhangs shelter the glazed doors to buffer the transition between indoor and out. Designed to connect with pedestrian pathways approaching the new square, its elevations provide clear views into the pavilion from afar.
Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre Studios
Reed Watts Architects
This park pavilion houses rehearsal studios and a catering kitchen for the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre. Spanning 480 sq m, the structure is constructed from a prefabricated, cross-laminated timber (CLT) panel system and was built in just seven months. The pavilion is clad in dark stained larch at the base with textured cladding above. At ground level, half of the building features the catering space, while the other half is a double height studio for performers. The second level provides further rehearsal spaces and a green room. The main studio, which measures 14.3 x 10m studio with 4.1m high ceilings, features a full height mirror and a sprung floor with a harlequin vinyl finish. Plenty of natural light enters the space from roof lights and a large framed window that can also be blacked out. ‘The building is purposefully understated, but not apologetic. Beneath its crafted timber facade the building confidently allows the Theatre to get on with its business without upsetting the balance of its unique setting,’ says Jim Reed, architect and co-founder of Reed Watts Architects. The practice was founded in 2016 and has completed a café in the Madjeski Garden at the V&A Museum and continue to work on projects for Shoreditch Town Hall and Pocket Living in London. Photography: Simon Kennedy
Vitra Campus, Germany
Gracing the green lawn of the Vitra Campus, this pavilion has been designed by German artist Thomas Schütte. The pavilion houses a fired-clay water fountain and two benches beneath its quirky pitched roof made of titanium zinc shingles. The irregularly skewed hexangonal footprint gives it its twisted effect and the walls constructed of untreated Nordic pine extend outwards at angles. Vitra gave life to a 1:10 scale model of the pavilion by the artist that was exhibited in 2016 – it struck the fancy of Rolf Fehlbaum, chairman emeritus of Vitra, who saw the model on display at Galerie Konrad Fischer in Düsseldorf and decided to commission it for the campus. The artist sees the role of the pavilion as an object and a shelter, instead of a piece of architecture like other Vitra-commissioned pavilions on the campus. Photography: Julien Lanoo
In Loreto square in the historic centre of Mexico, this pavilion has been designed for a competition named ‘Urban Toys’ commissioned by the Laboratorio para la Ciudad and the Mexico City government. The pavilion responds to the brief to develop a contemporary playground for the context of the historic square. Designed for children to play on and interact with, two circular ramps rise with opposite slopes, placed concentrically and the net and the water encourage dynamic play. The project spans the plaza fountain, using the existing architecture, yet taking advantage of the location that attracts people to congregate and spend time. By working with the familiar architecture, the pavilion doesn’t interrupt the daily flow of life, yet provides a new framework to complement and celebrate time spent there. Photography: Onnis Luque
The Brera Design District has a shiny new info point designed by Francesco Librizzi for aluminium brand DVNE. The pavilion transforms a street intersection into a square, making a space for pedestrians to gather and marking the entrance to the Brera Design District. The pavilion is an urban intervention that shapes the use of public space and enjoys its scenographic location in the heart of Milan. Made of three mm-thick sheets anodised aluminium by DVNE, used commonly for architectural cladding, it creates shimmering chromatic and textural effects when interacting with light. The material of the pavilion, DVNE, is a Peraluman aluminum surface that is designed for interior and exterior use. The material is designed by Matteo Costa, who reached the design through layering, a series of chromatic applications and a surface grain achieved mechanically during cutting. Photography: Alberto Moncada
MAD Architects, led by Ma Yansong, has designed an immersive installation that creates a new dimension inside the courtyard of Milan’s historic Seminario Arcivescovile – a seminary built in 1564 for St Carlo Borromeo. The floating circular ring inside the square of the courtyard stands as a ‘symbol of mankind’s continued search for perfection, while also defining a new dimension for the traditional courtyard’. On display from 16-28 April 2018, MAD Architects’ existential structure comprises an illuminated circle that hovers above a pool of water creating spectacular reflections – the lighting has been designed by Artemide and the engineering by Maco Technology.
Carlo Ratti Associati and Studio Römer
Subtitled ‘a garden pavilion with the four seasons’, this structure ‘uses energy flow controls to allow spring, summer, autumn and winter to coexist under the same roof’ say the architects. Located in Piazza del Duomo for the duration of Milan Design Week (17 -25 April), the concept makes use of an innovative energy management system for climate control, with green spaces curated by Patrick Blanc and Flavio Pollano. Spanning 500 sq m, the five-metre-high pavilion houses four climatic microcosms, corresponding to the seasons, with each displaying design objects by some of the most prestigious furniture brands, including Arper, Cappellini, Ethimo, Glas Italia, Kartell, Living Divani, Magis, Moroso. Each season corresponds to a new typology of space: the living room in spring, a picnic in summer, the office in autumn and the playroom in winter. Embodying the values of Salone del Mobile’s 2018 manifesto for exploring a new relationship between nature and design, the pavilion will host a series of talks on nature and sustainability with an international array of speakers throughout its duration.
Located at the Università degli Studi di Milano, one of three different locations for the Interni House in Motion exhibition, this experimental pavilion titled Baldacchino is a reference to the ornamental canopies above altars or thrones. Made of raw steel, chosen for its texture and materiality, the design is a response to the theme of the exhibition that focuses on residence, mobility, and transformable space within the home and the notion of nomadic, transient habitats. To animate the space, Stanton Williams also commissioned a dance performance choreographed by Thea Stanton to explore the relationship between the body and architecture.
Photography: Saverio Lombardi Vallauri
Located in the Brera Design District, this pavilion designed by Italian architecture practice Piuarch draws on the past to define the lifestyles of the future and expresses the values of tomorrow’s living spaces – lightness brightness and economy of resources. Its design eliminates the boundaries between interior and exterior, and natural and artificial spaces. Across all projects, Piuarch focus on sustainability, the interaction between architecture and context and the relationship with art, use of natural materials and a focus on energy saving.
3D Printed house
Italian architect Massimiliano Locatelli of CLS Architetti has been working with Italcementi Heidelberg Cement Group, Arup and Cybe on a new project for Milan Design Week; a 3D-printed house, which will be built on site at Piazza Cesare Beccaria during the course of the fair. Creativity, sustainability, flexibility, affordability and rapidity are key areas to consider when 3D printing, says the architect. ‘My vision was to integrate new, more organic shapes in the surrounding landscapes or urban architecture. My intention was to do the first house for a square in the centre of Milan. I wanted to show a different way of using a printing machine and explore how a concrete house could create a dialogue with our memories of interior design, made of references to archetypes of the past,’ says Massimiliano Locatelli of the design.
Photography: Luca Rotondo
Ryerson University, Toronto, Ontario
Adrian Chiu, Arnel Espanol, Henry Mai of Ryerson University in Toronto have contributed an upbeat pavilion to the Winter Stations International design competition that takes place each year on Toronto beach around the lifeguard stations – the seven Winter Stations were ‘riot-themed’ and each as colourful and creative as the next. The Ryerson University’s pavilion pictured is made of ‘modular cells that contain a weave of colourful webs’. The NEST pavilion embodies ‘ideas of comfort within a system of disorder and complexity’ and is playful, yet also provides shelter. The young designers were inspired by political upheaval, continued global uncertainty and making a statement with colour and form on Toronto beach. Now in its fourth edition, the Winter Stations Design Competition was founded by RAW Design, Ferris + Associates, and Curio, the Winter Stations Design Competition as a way to inspire Torontonians to enjoy the beach in the winter. Photography: Khristel Stecher
Created as an exploration of classic architecture principles, such as form, light and texture, this ethereal pavilion was designed and built by emerging London-based architecture practice Studio Kyson. Headed by Scott Kyson, the architects worked on the pavilion playing with juxtapositions between solid and void, dark and light, and rough and smooth. Clad in Japanese Shou Sugi Ban charred timber and smoked mirrors that reflect the surrounding leafy setting, Kyson envisioned a demountable structure that can be transported from site to site. It is currently nestled in the lush gardens of the architect’s own London abode, but plans are underway for it to be transported to a more permanent home. Photography: Troy Hodgson of Darcstudio. Writer: Ellie Stathaki
Diogo Aguiar Studio
Diogo Aguiar Studio’s ‘Garden pavilion’ installed at the Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art in Porto is part of a series of pavilions commissioned for the display of film in the exhibition titled ‘Live Uncertainty: An Exhibition after the 32nd Bienal de São Paulo’. The continuously curved pavilion constructed of timber planks is a shady cocoon for the viewing of a film by artist Gabriel Abrantes. The façade of the circular pavilion transforms from exterior to interior, leading visitors within from three different entrance points. Inside, there are two concentric spaces, one interstitial and the other central, that flow together and create a natural control of light into the space where the film is shown. Photography: Fernando Guerra
Another pavilion commissioned by the Serralves Foundation in Porto, this pavilion designed by the Porto-based studio depA Architects is built of dark glass that reflects its leafy surroundings. The mysterious geometric form appears to float on a lake in the middle of Serralves Park, in proximity to the foundation’s contemporary art museum designed by Álvaro Siza and the art deco Serralves Villa. The mirrored exterior walls enable the pavilion to build up a direct relationship with its surroundings and become a canvas for its context. Its shape is lifted from the architectural plan of the Serralves Museum, echoing the hexagonal matrix of one of its central spaces, a shape that is also featured in the landscaping of the park. Inside, the pavilion is neutral with stripped back interiors and is used as a space to display video work by artists O Peixe and Jonathas de Andrade. Photography: José Campos
The People’s Station
People’s Architecture Office
Kwan-Yen district of Yantai, China
A new cultural centre for the community, conceived and built within just three months with a pre-fabricated construction system, has arrived in the Kwan-Yen district of Yantai in China. The People’s Station is an event space and a base for exploring the historic centre of the town in which it is located. Wide open entranceways and light-filled events spaces welcome members of the community inside, while upstairs there is a lounge, bookstore, cinema and outdoor terraces on each floor. The organic and dynamic form is modular in appearance, with ‘portable appendages’. These ‘Tricycle Houses’ are event spaces on wheels that can transport the activities of the People’s Station around the town like satellites. The first event is an exhibition of the design work of the People’s Architecture Office, which includes projects that have informed The People’s Station itself, including projects such as the People’s Canopy, the Plugin Prefabricated System and the Tricycle House. Photography: People’s Architecture Office, Zhu Rui
Like many projects commissioned for Design Week Mexico (11-15 October), ‘Parteluz’, an elliptical pavilion by Mexico City-based firm Materia, was already under construction when an earthquake struck the city on 19 September. The emerging studio’s latticed structure of concrete and wood was meant to explore ‘void and mass’, or how ‘static’ building materials might interact with a “dynamic” material such as light, as Gustavo Carmona of Materia explains. But with structures flattened less than a mile from the installation site, in the gardens outside of Museo Tamayo, words in the project brief such as ‘dematerialization’ and ‘deconstruction’ took on new poignancy. For the architects, then, Materia’s pavilion among the trees of Chapultepec Park, the largest urban park in Latin America, became something like the city amidst recovery: an ‘in-between’ area neither fully interior nor exterior, explains Carmona, who founded Materia with Lisa Beltran in 2006. The firm’s projects, spanning nine countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, include the Louis Vuitton boutique in Mexico City. Instead, in the demarcated sky, and in dissolving shadows cast by more than 70 white columns, is a filtered experience where the frames of a room can change in an instant, and where one realizes, perhaps, that the boundaries that separate us are porous, and we have always, as ever, been in the same space. ‘It was hard to restart the process after what happened,’ Carmona says, of finishing the open-air pavilion in the midst of a recovery and rescue effort that rallied many of the regions’ architects and designers. ‘But all of us seemed to see in it a symbolic way of rebuilding, of edifying not just our cities and towns, but of our characters. This is very Mexican, I would say.’ Photography: Jaime Navarro. Writer: Su Wu
‘We tried to work only with fundamental architectural elements, coupling them in a way that is not classic or baroque, old or modern, but all of that in unison,’ say architects Camarim about the design of Delgada 1, a pergola and swimming pool structure designed for a family home located in a small hamlet 75km north of Lisbon. Lisbon-based architecture studio Camarim, founded in 2007 by Vasco Matias Correia and Patrícia Ferreira de Sousa, was commissioned for the renovation of the house and the construction of an external pergola and swimming pool. Yet instead of seeing the project as a whole, the architects quite fearlessly separated the entities, designing a bold exterior structure that transcended the traditional style of the house. While striking in its appearance, particularly in full sunlight when severe shadows are cast across the platform from the slim colonnades, the structure is also warm and inviting. Constructed of reinforced concrete and a pink marble from Estremoz that tints the water in the pool turquoise, the pergola runs parallel to the house and is sensitively placed between the trees with the swimming pool extending out towards the hills, vines, apple trees and pines in the south. Photography: Nelson Garrido
Martell Foundation, Cognac, France
For their first architectural project in France, architects SelgasCano had to race against the clock. The Spanish duo had just six weeks to realise this organic, undulating structure in the courtyard of the Martell Foundation in Cognac, France. The 1,300 sq m protean structure forms a labyrinthine canopy between the art deco 1929 Gatehouse building and the 18th century wine cellars. ‘It’s a natural invasion – we wanted to break away from the linear perspective that connects the entrance to the founder’s house,’ the architects explain, ‘we wanted to create a contrasting form.’ Commissioned to design a lightweight, free-standing ensemble for cultural events, the architects used a toolkit of elements including 43 porticos and eight different set of curved tubular structures. A wavy, translucent canopy of polyester and fibreglass, supplied by French manufacturer Onduline, defines the tone. Yellow water-filled inflated seats are randomly installed throughout, allowing visitors to sit, lean, stretch out or gather around site-specific cultural events. ‘The aim of the pavilion is for people to mingle, and attend a diverse programme of activities. A couple of bars and stands will welcome local producers during set market days and serve cocktails,’ says Nathalie Viot, head of the Martell Foundation, ‘I want the Foundation to be rooted in the local terroir, to source the best from the region and spin it into a broad, international dimension.’ Staged like a series of translucent waves, the curvilinear pavilion is a maze. ‘We hope visitors will wander like in a forest, meander inside the structure’, say the architects. Finding ones way through the pavilion’s structure definitely creates expectations, if not creative encounters. Committed to its local community and environment, the Martell Foundation also explores new boundaries by reusing some of the wood from Vincent Lamouroux’s previous installation, Par nature (By nature). In 2018, the pavilion will be dismantled and reinstalled abroad within the framework of a social and community initiative. Photography: Iwan Baan. Writer: Clara Le Fort
Renzo Piano Photography Pavilion
Château La Coste, Provence, France
Sunken 6m into a 500 acre vineyard in Provence, Renzo Piano’s Photography Pavilion at Château La Coste opened with an exhibition titled ‘The Sea and the Mirror’, featuring eight photographs by Hiroshi Sugimoto from the Seascapes series. The 285 sq m pavilion will host photography exhibitions and also preserve wine within its cellars. Piano’s dynamic roof, lowered to ground level, is a focal point of the pavilion. It takes the form of a sail, connected with thin metal arches and alternating concrete ribs and glazing, which is anchored to the exposed concrete walls of the pavilion. At the back of the structure a concrete platform will provide a space for sculpture. Situated between Aix-En-Provence and the Luberon National Park, Château La Coste has attracted artists and architects from around the world to contribute to building up an open air architecture and art exhibition. A winemaking cellar has been designed by Jean Nouvel and an art centre by Tadao Ando, as well as art works on the site by Louise Bourgeouis and Jenny Holzer amongst others. Photography: Stephane Aboudaram, We Are Contents
AAU Anastas and GSA research lab at ENSA Paris-Malaquais
In light of the decline of stone building in Palestine, where the material can be found in abundance, Bethlehem-based architecture practice AAU Anastas collaborated with the the GSA Lab of ENSA Paris-Malaquais to research and innovate stone building techniques by examining historic free-form stone vaults across Palestine. The Stonematters pavilion was born from this research and also part of an artists’ residency programme in Jericho. The structure, which spans a surface area of 60 sq m, has been built entirely out of 300 interlocking stones that are mutually supported. Part of the challenge for the team was that the materials and techniques were locally sourced from the city of Jericho. For example, a polystyrene construction support was roughly cut in a local factory and transported to another factory for a robotic carving process, which determined the specific shapes of the ‘bricks’. For AAU Anastas, the stone pavilion is a symbol of the urban history of Palestine and the role of stereotomy, the art of cutting and assembling stones, in that history, yet it is also a contemporary form that demonstrates new, sophisticated local construction techniques and an evolving social model of urbanism for the city. Photography: Mikaela Burstow
Dulwich Pavilion, ‘After Image’
Summer in London isn’t complete without a pavilion. While appearing blithe throughout the summer months, the Brits do rely on weather shielding structures in case of rain, and especially value a pavilion as beautiful as this contemporary, minimal form by London-based architecture studio IF_DO, which also conceals a bar within its reflective aluminium panels. The design structurally reflects the dimensions of the Dulwich Picture Gallery, which was designed by Sir John Soane 200 years ago, while bringing a fresh aesthetic to the landscape through clean, contemporary materials. Commissioned by the London Festival of Architecture, in partnership with the Dulwich Picture Gallery and Almacantar, the Dulwich Pavilion will host talks, live music and events beneath its timber and mesh veil roof throughout the summer. Photography: Joakim Boren
Reveling in the opportunity to work with traditional materials, SHoP collaborated with NBK Keramik to create this sculptural installation made of terracotta. As a part of the exhibition ‘Material Immaterial’ at the Università degli Studi di Milano, the pavilion is a contemplation on the meeting of authenticity, materiality and technology in design. Working with engineers Metalsigma Tunesi, SHoP built up 1,670 unglazed terracotta blocks into three tiers of adjoining flute shapes creating a honey-comb style form that its contemporary and traditional at once. The cream-coloured, decorative appearance of WAVE/CAVE sparks up a delightful conversation with the courtyard in which it sits. Photography: Tom Harris
Woodbine Beach, Canada
Constructed from reclaimed wood with a weathered skin, the stoic form of The Beacon looks as if it has existed for years at Woodbine Beach, on the shore of Lake Ontario. It’s conical shape, designed by Joao Araujo Sousa & Joana Correia Silva of Porto-based JJS Arquitectura, is drawn from the abstracted essence of a traditional lighthouse. The Beacon encases a charity drop-off point inside for canned goods and clothes, serves as a community meeting point, and also acts as a shelter for a lifeguard. One of the winners of the annual ‘Winter Stations’ festival, the architects see the project as an opportunity to establish a permanent network of donation pavilions across Toronto. Photography: Khristel Stecher
Amor de Perdição Square, Porto
Injecting a pop of purple into the historic heart of Porto, Eclipse is a celebration of the Porto’s 20th anniversary as a Unesco World Heritage Site. Working at the intersection between art and architecture, local architecture practice founded by Filipa Frois Almeida and Hugo Reis, FAHR 021.3, designed the bold ball to inspire people to rethink the way they see the city. Advancing into the Amor de Perdição Square, where Eclipse is positioned slightly off-centre, the form appears solid yet moving closer the surface materialises as a web of three-dimensional holes – the 6m diameter orb is made of metal ventilation ducts which frame new visions of the 2000 year old urban centre. Photography: Fernando Guerra (FG+SG)
An oversized speaker has bowled up at White City Place, the former BBC Media Village, inside which is a studio space for recording podcasts. Creative agency dn&co asked Fathom Architects to design this moveable studio available for the public, businesses and brands to take their maiden voyage into the world of podcasting. Based upon the shape of a speaker, the form is a ‘disrupted cube’ punched with circular windows resembling speaker cones that open the studio up to intrigued passersby. At 12 sq m in size, with enough room for six people inside, the pink and purple speaker is patterned with pixels generated from the world’s first radio transmission: ‘One, two, three, four. Is it snowing where you are Mr Thiessen?’ Photography: Tian Khee Siong
The Mirrored Sight
Located on the north bank of the Longxi River – outside Longli in southeast Guizhou, China – architect Li Hao has constructed a permanent mirrored shelter made of bamboo.The pavilion, a place for leisure and contemplation, is covered with a skin of Pilkington Mirropane (a single-transparency glass) on the southern facade, which reflects the old town of a site established as an early Ming military settlement 600 years ago, culturally and architecturally unique from the surrounding area. Inside the double-level space, the upper floor is a pyramid-shaped viewing platform which opens up framed views of the landscape. Reached from the town by a well-trodden, historic stone bridge, the pavilion is like a gateway house marking entry to the natural environment. A cultural landmark for the relatively isolated community, it provides a unique experience for citizens and visitors. Photography: Kang Wei
DOX Centre for Contemporary Art, Prague
Floating over the courtyard of Prague’s DOX Centre for Contemporary Art, ’Gulliver’ is the latest addition to the city’s booming cultural scene. Designed by Czech architect Martin Rajniš, the 42m-long steel and wooden structure, in the shape of an early 20th century airship, opened last week as a permanent new centre for literature. The architect used the shape of the airship as a symbolic reminder of a more optimistic time – of early 20th century technological progress and the artistic avant-garde. The actual structure connects both high-tech architecture and art events, hosted inside. The 10m-wide ship, made of wooden planks and covered by a curved plastic shield, will serve as a space for reading and public discussions of literature – fiction, poetry and critical writing – related to the themes of DOX’s exhibitions, which typically offer a critical view of particular aspects of the contemporary human situation. Photography: Jan Slavík and Petr Králík. Writer: Adam Štěch
DJA (Didzis Jaunzems Architecture)
For just 24 hours last September, this glacial pavilion was installed in the Riga Dome Cathedral’s garden as part of contemporary art forum White Night. Architect Didzis Jaunzems wanted to create a cool and contemporary pavilion to contrast the historic nature of the setting. Through the design, Jaunzems explored the two opposites of ‘naturalness’ and ‘artificiality’. Living in a world where humans have developed science so far as to predict, recreate and simulate nature itself, ‘Can the artificial world fully replace the natural world?’ he asked. The icy effect was achieved with thin plexiglass, of which half was made matte with a sanding machine, before light was projected from within. Photography: Uldis Lapins
Urban Clippings (Mirror in the Sky)
Jimenez Lai, Bureau Spectacular
As part of last year’s Taipei Landscape Public Art Project, Jimenez Lai, founder and partner at architecture studio Bureau Spectacular, created ‘Urban Clippings (Mirror in the Sky)’. The temporary structure was a floating device through which to view the city, acting as a kaleidoscope; framing and reflecting the urban environment. Lai invited visitors to enter the structure to view the ‘clippings of the city’ and to see their own infinitely repeating form reflected into the environment like a ‘visual echo’. ‘Urban Clippings (Mirror in the Sky)’ was on view until 28 December 2016 at the intersection of Jiancheng Park at Chengde Road and Nanjing West Road in Taipei. Photography: JD Huang
Ben van Berkel, UNStudio and MDT-tex
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
The Amsterdam Light Festival information booth designed by UNStudio omits a hypnotic glow, mimicking that of bioluminescent deep-sea creatures, who use pulsating light to attract and communicate with mates. Inspired by the ALF’s ‘biomimicry’ theme – ‘the imitation of natural phenomena for the purpose of solving complex human problems’ – the designers took the plunge and created a bold sculptural form constructed with 250 two- and three-dimensional tensile textile modules conceived by MDT-tex. Positioned in a patterned constellation, the overlapping modules enable the shape of the pavilion to twist dynamically between the two base cubes. The soft glow of the form is created with LED lights supplied and installed by Zumtobel in consultation with Florian Licht of Licht & Soehne. These are projected out from the inside of the pavilion, evolving in a rolling gradient of colour. Photography: Janus van den Eijnden