Paul Cashin Architects - Research Trip to London
As part of our on-going trips to award winning buildings and architecture, we have recently taken the train up from our studio in Hampshire to visit London, touring a number of new architecture projects as well as enjoying the city in a broader general sense.
New or fairly recently completed projects include the 2017 Serpentine Pavilion in Hyde Park, the new V&A (Victoria & Albert Museum) extension in South Kensington and the Gagosian Gallery between Mayfair and Piccadilly.
Berlin-based, Burkina Faso Architect, Diebedo Franic Kere’s Serpentine Pavilion reaches out of the ground like a tree - from which he took inspiration for the concept. It features weaving deep blue walls, constructed from triangular arrangements of cut timber pieces. The walls open up to the landscape and draw you into the courtyard and gathering space that they form at the centre.
A large timber dressed canopy seems to float and sail beyond these walls, supported by a steel lattice structure. The canopy is used to collect rainwater, that falls like a waterfall in the centre of the courtyard, funneling down to an irrigation tank beneath the pavilion. Perforations in the roof canopy and walls allow flickers of light through to the courtyard, reminiscent of sunlight dancing through the branches of a tree.
Amanda Levete Architect’s (AL_A) V&A extension combines a new entrance, cafe and subterranean exhibition space. In appearance, the project has a completely contemporary architectural aesthetic that juxtaposes against the Grade I listed building of the V&A. Although the exhibition space was un-populated during our visit, the emptiness created a rather sublime and thought-provoking experience. Especially in contrast to the successfully lively and active public space at the entrance.
Caruso St John’s extension to the Gagosian Gallery was completed in 2015. Internally, the space is an expertly crafted subdued blank canvas, suitable for the necessary flexibility that most gallery space requires. White walls contrast with dark oak flooring. While we were there we had the pleasure of viewing an immensely illuminating exhibit on the studies of Picasso. Externally, large windows and doors punctuate the grey brick building skin. The appearance of the building seemed to be a carefully considered composition of minimal elements and discreetly refined details - such as the long linear proportionality of the bricks or the sharp articulation of the coping.
These projects have definitely given us great inspiration and talking points for our own work and approach within our Winchester based studio.
More information of these projects can be found on Dezeen. Please see the links below: