Diébédo Francis Kéré founder of Berlin-based Kéré Architecture, has been appointed as the 17th architect to design the temporary pavilion in the grounds of the Serpentine Gallery in London. Francis, from Gando, Burkina Faso, was appointed by Serpentine artistic director Hans Ulrich Obrist and CEO Yana Peel along with advisors David Adjaye and Richard Rogers.
“Inspired by the tree that serves as a central meeting point for life in his home town of Gando, Francis Kéré has designed a responsive pavilion that seeks to connect its visitors to nature – and each other,” says the gallery. “An expansive roof, supported by a central steel framework, mimics a tree’s canopy, allowing air to circulate freely while offering shelter against London rain and summer heat.”
Francis’ work is committed to socially engaged and ecological design in his practice, evident in his award-winning primary school in Burkina Faso, solo shows in Munich and Philadelphia and his installation as part of the 2014 exhibition at the Royal Academy, Sensing Spaces.
“As an architect, it is an honour to work in such a grand park, especially knowing the history of how the gardens evolved and changed into what we see today. Every path and tree, even the Serpentine lake, were carefully designed,” says Francis. “I am fascinated by how this artificial landscape offered a new way for people in the city to experience nature. In Burkina Faso, I am accustomed to being confronted with climate and natural landscape as a harsh reality. For this reason I was interested in how my contribution to this Royal Park could not only enhance the visitor’s experience of nature, but also provoke a new way for people to connect with each other.”
The architect follows in the footsteps of the likes of BIG, OMA, Peter Zumthor and Herzog and de Meuron in accepting the commission.
- Josephin Ritschel presents architecture and its surroundings as a stage for storytelling
- Gender, sexuality and male identity as seen through the lens of Jorge Perez Ortiz
- Gab Bois transforms things we’ve seen a thousand times into something spectacular
- Aysha Tengiz on her joyous, colourful and slightly depressing illustrated scenes
- Satellite photography, drawing tools and interactive logotypes feature in Double Click September
- Lego reveals first brand campaign in 30 years, Rebuild the World
- “All you see is lazy photography everywhere”: Martin Parr discusses his career, Brexit and obsession
- The work of Xiangyu Liu is weird and fantastically unpredictable (some NSFW)
- Caterina Bianchini Studio designs a dog-themed identity for a conveyer belt cheese restaurant
- Ikea invites people to “try on” Virgil Abloh furniture collection at LFW
- Hans Findling on his experimental and multidisciplinary approach to design
- Introducing the It’s Nice That Graduates of 2019!