2012 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion – Ai Weiwei and Herzog & de Meuron

Last night, against a backdrop of high winds and pouring rain, saw the launch of the Serpentine Gallery’s 2012 pavilion. Each year the gallery commissions an architectural firm to come up with a unique and innovative temporary structure for their lawn. This year, the people behind the 2008 Beijing olympic stadium, Herzog & de Meuron and Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, came up with a pavilion that paid tribute it’s predecessors. The structure goes underground to explore the foundations of previous pavilions; cork clad geometric shapes cut across the space, creating multiple levels to explore, whilst 12 columns support a floating platform of water above. Despite the rain there was a good turn out as everyone sheltered in the pavilion between runs to the bar. The pavilion will host a number of cultural events over the summer as part of the London 2012 Festival, including the Serpentine Gallery Memory Marathon, the seventh marathon in a series conceived by the gallery’s co-director Hans Ulrich Obrist.

(additional images courtesty of Serpentine Gallery and Iwan Baan)

copyright Iwan Baan