A First Look At The New Serpentine Pavilion

Tabish Khan
By Tabish Khan Last edited 29 months ago
A First Look At The New Serpentine Pavilion
Serpentine Pavilion 2016 designed by Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG); Photo © Iwan Baan

Anyone walking through the centre of Kensington Gardens will spot this year's Serpentine Pavilion. It's a towering, misshapen pyramid designed by Bjarke Ingels Group.

They've called it an 'unzipped wall' and from a distance it looks ethereal. But get up close and the design is much more industrial than at first imagined. Rectangular fibreglass frames are stacked upon each other to create the sweeping curves of the design.

Though it's interesting how the light filters through, it does seem like an odd choice of material which means it's less interesting close-up than from a distance. In the long list of Serpentine pavilions, this is largely forgettable.

As is expected with all Serpentine pavilions, this structure will host a cafe and performances in the evening. We still recommend you go and take a look.

Serpentine Summer House 2016 designed by Barkow Leibinger; Photo © Iwan Baan Serpentine

The big addition this year is the four smaller structures — the summer houses located nearby. It's a great idea to not limit the programme to one structure, and that all four are quite different really helps them bounce off one another.

Serpentine Summer House 2016 designed by Kunlé Adeyemi (NLÉ); Photo © Iwan Baan

This year's highlight is Asif Khan's structure — a cleaner and more precise version of the main pavilion.

Serpentine Summer House 2016 designed by Asif Khan; Photo © Iwan Baan

Hopefully this is the first of many years that we see both the pavilion and the summer houses.

Serpentine Summer House 2016 designed by Kunlé Adeyemi (NLÉ); Photo © Iwan Baan
Serpentine Summer House 2016 designed by Yona Friedman; Photo © Iwan Baan

Last Updated 07 June 2016