The Serpentine Pavilion programme has announced its first overseas commission that will be built in Bejing this year. Chinese studio Jiakun Architects have been appointed to create a structure that will open in May.
“Jiakun Architects’ Serpentine Pavilion Beijing takes inspiration from Confucianism with an architecture that is a physical representation of the traditional pursuit of Junzi,” says the Serpentine Gallery. “The design is characterised by the figure of the Archer, in the form of a curved cantilever beam that incorporates the forces of elasticity through cables stretched between steel plates. Although modern architecture in Beijing has developed a series of powerful techniques to fight the external forces of fierce winds and unpredictable earthquakes, the pavilion’s integral structure aims – like the Tai Chi Master – to conquer the harshness of those forces with softness.”
The Serpentine Pavilion programme was launched in London in 2000 and has seen the likes of Zaha Hadid, Rem Koolhaas and, last year, Francis Kere, design temporary structures to sit on the lawn outside the gallery. The Beijing pavilion will sit outside WF Central for a period of six months. It is intended to serve as “a public space for cultural activities, events and social encounters at the very heart of WF Central.”