The most ambitious architectural programme of its kind worldwide, the Serpentine’s annual Pavilion commission is one of the most anticipated announcements on the cultural calendar. Past Pavilions have included designs by Herzog & de Meuron and Ai Weiwei (2012), Frank Gehry (2008), the late Oscar Niemeyer (2003) and Zaha Hadid, who designed the inaugural structure in 2000.
Widely acknowledged as one of the most important architects coming to prominence worldwide, Sou Fujimoto is the leading light of an exciting generation of architects who are re-inventing our relationship with the built environment. Inspired by organic structures, such as the forest, Fujimoto’s signature buildings inhabit a space between nature and artificiality. Fujimoto has completed the majority of his buildings in Japan, with commissions ranging from the domestic, such as Final Wooden House, T House and House N, to the institutional, such as the Musashino Art Museum and Library at Musashino Art University.
Occupying some 357 square-metres of lawn in front of the Serpentine Gallery, Sou Fujimoto’s delicate, latticed structure of 20mm steel poles has a lightweight and semi-transparent appearance that allows it to blend, cloud-like, into the landscape against the classical backdrop of the Gallery’s colonnaded East wing. Designed as a flexible, multi-purpose social space – with a café run for the first time by Fortnum and Mason inside – visitors will be encouraged to enter and interact with the Pavilion in different ways throughout its four-month tenure in London's Kensington Gardens.