Thursday, 19 September 2013

200words: serpentine pavilion 2013

"When they melt, they disappear; when it is hot, they vanish from their place." Job 6:17

We're caning bare white innit, starched and straight up like the teeth of West London darlings on Charlie sipping Fortnum flat whites. I'm ensconced in a milky white washed hot air cocoon, waiting for my architecture to download. Polygon count pending, shimmering in stark binary, clean as a CGI rendering, this pavilion is edgy: all edges and thin substance, point clouds without weight, space frames without face. Aren't we all, now?

Trending and on trend, Fujimoto has conceived and sold a fragment of infinity, a frayed form, torn from the matrix of our networked age. His fuzzy piece of the cloud is saturated with similaic potential, a revival of fashionably orthogonal retro tetristic trellisistic architectronic forms. But beyond these puns, the wry wiry frame retraces the cubic outlines of an earlier modernism ironically and critically. Neo-nostalgic, the work here is post-metabolist, clinically and caustically it has hollowed out earlier optimisms. How so?

The question that drives Fujimoto is: “ architecture could be part of nature, or how they could be merged.”. No organically decomposed honeycomb of nooks and nests, caves and coves, will achieve this seamless mergence with the non-human landscape, except by a self-annihilating return to primitives and through phenomenological transparency - and thus Fujimoto has had to learn to disappear completely.

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