Silly Season: Serpentines and Ladders
To atone for having totally forgotten Peter Zumthor’s Serpentine Pavilion even existed last summer, I thought I’d stroll into Hyde Park and have a look at Sou Fujimoto’s effort this summer. First of all, this is the Serpentine Gallery. It’s an art gallery. Here’s some art outside it.
“Fischli/Weiss’s work is a finely-judged balance of humour and seriousness. Underpinning it is a spirit of discovery that encourages us to take a fresh look at our surroundings. Rock on Top of Another Rock oscillates between stability and instability, construction and destruction.”
Anyway, here’s this year’s Serpentine Pavilion. Whadjathink? We’d better read this next thing first. Architects would hate us to make hasty judgments of the like/dislike kind without us first understanding what the fuck it was they were trying to do/”achieve”. The first bit is true. After reading the liability disclaimer you can explore the “site” in new and diverse ways. To be honest, those “ways” are as contrived as they are predictable as they are dull. In fairness though, kids can relate. You can take photos of your kids suspended “in the space between architecture and nature.” There are too many photos in the world. If you don’t have any kids, you can always check your messages. Tweet? Speaking of birds, London’s famous pigeons are a no-show. So far. The “Donations” police (undercover, on right) transform this pavilion into pay-per-view architecture. If anybody in this day and age still gets off on “appreciating the boundaries between interior and exterior” then they can buy a cup of coffee or a piece of carrot cake or whatever and pay a second time for that intended user experience. Mouths to feed, etc. I WAS THERE. So I decided to see if the incessantly capitalised Pavilion’s “geometry and constructed forms could meld with the natural and the human” and check if “from certain vantage points, the fragile cloud of the Pavilion appears to merge with the classical structure of the Serpentine Gallery, its visitors suspended in the space between architecture and nature.” This next image was not from one of those vantage points. The (neo!-)”classical” Serpentine is obliterated. There is a certain cloudy cloud thing happening though. Here, there’s a certain fency fence thing happening. I tried. I really did. This is my best, though there’s not much to be seen in the way of people. I’ll probably stroll through Hyde Park again summer 2014 on my way to somewhere.