BIG unveils “unzipped” wall design for 2016 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion


Danish firm BIG led by Bjarke Ingels has unviled its design for the 2016 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion, featuring an “unzipped” wall to create a three-dimensional space.

The structure will be made from a series of box-like fibreglass frames that are stocked on top of each other, reminiscent of a brick wall.



This wall then splits to create a curved opening to the pavilion complete with jagged edges.

Ingels said: “We have attempted to design a structure that embodies multiple aspects that are often perceived as opposites: a structure that is free-form yet rigorous, modular yet sculptural, both transparent and opaque, both solid box and blob.”


“This unzipping of the wall turns the line into a surface, transforming the wall into a space,” he added. “At the top, the wall appears like a straight line, while at the bottom, it forms a sheltered valley at the entrance of the pavilion and an undulating hillside towards the park.”


The structure is planned to feature a void at its centre that will include a café and an events space during the day, and the annual Park Night’s programme in the evening.


“As you can see from the architect’s renders, Bjarke Ingels has responded to the brief for a multipurpose pavilion with a supremely elegant structure that is both curvaceous wall and soaring spire, that will surely serve as a beacon – drawing visitors across Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens to visit the pavilion, the summerhouses and our major exhibitions by Alex Katz and Etel Adnan,” said gallery directors Julia Peyton-Jones and Hans Ulrich Obrist.

Bjarke has also recently completed an art space in Abu Dhabi’s main port area, Warehouse421.

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