Following their iconic National Stadium conceived for Beijing’s Summer Olympics 2008, the acclaimed Swiss architectural practice Herzog & de Meuron and the ubiquitous Chinese artist Ai Weiwei have joined their creative forces once again, this time designing the recently-opened Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2012. Featuring a sky-reflecting floating roof suspended 1.4 metres above ground, the cork-clad Pavilion features eleven columns representative of all previous Pavilions commissioned by the Serpentine Gallery to date. Watch the Pavilion captured on film in the video below.
More about the Pavilion:
‘Our path to an alternative solution involves digging down some five feet into the soil of the park until we reach the groundwater. There we dig a waterhole, a kind of well, to collect all of the London rain that falls in the area of the Pavilion. In that way we incorporate an otherwise invisible aspect of reality in the park – the water under the ground – into our Pavilion.
‘As we dig down into the earth we encounter a diversity of constructed realities such as telephone cables and former foundations. Like a team of archaeologists, we identify these physical fragments as remains of the eleven Pavilions built between 2000 and 2011. Their shape varies: circular, long and narrow, dots and also large, constructed hollows that have been filled in. These remains testify to the existence of the former Pavilions and their greater or lesser intervention in the natural environment of the park.