Client Serpentine Gallery

The wall and roof plans

The Pavilion in Kensington Gardens designed by Toyo Ito, can hardly be described as an exercise in daylighting design; however it has been included in the Case Studies, as daylight has clearly informed the architect's entire design. Perhaps the building is best described as an 'abstract work of art.'

The building is the third in a series of galleries commissioned to provide a unique showcase for contemporary architectural practice, following works by Zaha Hadid, and Daniel Libeskind, to design a pavilion for the gallery's lawn.

The purpose of the building was basically a restaurant during the day, and it is most successful in this, with views out on to Kensington Gardens, in which there is no need for artificial lighting.

In the evening the building is described by the sponsors as playing host to a special programme of summer events, architectural talks, film screenings and the BBC poetry proms, all requiring little or no artificial lighting. It can therefore be said that this project is entirely naturally lit. It is equally important to recognize that it is an ephemeral building, a 'statement' intended to be replaced the following year; it therefore required none of the limitations of having to withstand the test over time.

Since it would be difficult, if not impossible, to describe the pavilion adequately in words, it is best described in a series of photographs, which indicate the quality of the space, and the way in which it interacts on its surroundings in the park.

Exterior with entrance ramp

Interior of the restaurant

Roof detail from inside

Exterior with entrance ramp

Detail ofthe exterior walling

Interior of the restaurant

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