The Red Sun Pavilion

by Andrew Wade

This evening architect Jean Nouvel introduced his first completed building in the UK, the 2010 Serpentine Pavilion.  Each summer the Serpentine Gallery commissions a prominent architect to design and build a temporary structure in Hyde Park in just six months.  The immediacy, transience and accessibility of the project make it a playground of experimentation and a powerful means of activating this quiet green space in London.  Nouvel's concept of playfulness caused him to introduce ping pong tables, a cinema screen, and tables for chess and backgammon as well as screens and fabrics used as light filters and shelter - all in the same shade of deep red.  Can similar guidelines of immediacy, transience and accessibility be applied in other contexts as a way of catalysing transformation of the urban realm?

Credits: Images of the 2010 Serpentine Pavilion from Andrew Wade.