Free Entry And A New Pavilion - Exciting Times At Dulwich Picture Gallery

Tabish Khan
By Tabish Khan Last edited 11 months ago

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Free Entry And A New Pavilion - Exciting Times At Dulwich Picture Gallery
The new pavilion by architects IF_DO, looks stunning. Photo copyright Joakim Boren.

This year marks the 200th anniversary of the Dulwich Picture Gallery, and it's celebrating in style.

The gallery has given itself a birthday present, in the form of a sparkling pavilion outside the front. Designed by young architecture firm IF_DO it's an an odd but alluring structure; a kind of mirror maze topped out in wooden scaffold and draped in a translucent 'table cloth'.

The mirrors don't outshine the gallery itself, but rather complement the adjacent building. In fact the architects have used the mirrors to reflect the John Soane-designed gallery... though we're fairly certain selfies aplenty will be taken using the reflective columns.

The pavilion perfectly complements the gallery. Photo copyright Joakim Boren.

We also like how the translucent roof almost blends in with the sky — it certainly did when we visited on a cloudy day (it took us a while to realise the pavilion was covered at all).

It's important that visitors will be protected from the elements because every Friday night over the next few months the pavilion is playing host to talks, live music and film screenings.

The translucent roof keeps people protected and blends in with the sky above. Photo copyright Joakim Boren.

There will also be a bar on site, run by the team behind The Camberwell Arms — best known for running Peckham's rooftop Frank's cafe.

The gallery's permanent collection is also free to access during the lates; given that there's normally an admission charge, that's another reason to spend your Friday nights south of the river.

The Friday lates should be fun. Photo copyright Joakim Boren.

We know Dulwich Picture Gallery is one of those places on many people's to-do list. These lates — plus the pavilion — mean there's never been a better time to tick it off.

The pavilion will almost certainly draw comparisons with the annual Serpentine effort; but that's no bad thing — what a treat it is to have two this summer.

There's been no confirmation whether the Dulwich pavilion will become an annual feature, but we're sure hoping it does.

The Dulwich Pavilion is open from 2 June-8 October, Tuesday-Sunday. The lates are on every Friday in June and July (except 7 July), from 6pm-10pm. Visiting the Lates is free, but tickets need to be booked online.

Last Updated 17 June 2017