A rendering of Ishigami's design for the 2019 Serpentine Pavilion.
Photo: Serpentine Galleries/Junya Ishigami + Associates

Architect Junya Ishigami to Design 2019 Serpentine Pavilion

The Japanese architect will create an undulating slate hill in London’s Hyde Park

Japanese architect Junya Ishigami has been selected to design the Serpentine Pavilion in Hyde Park this summer. Ishigami’s monochromatic structure will resemble a slate roof rising up out of the landscape.

“My design for the pavilion plays with our perspectives of the built environment against the backdrop of a natural landscape, emphasizing a natural and organic feel as though it had grown out of the lawn, resembling a hill made out of rocks,” Ishigami said in a statement. “This is an attempt to supplement traditional architecture with modern methodologies and concepts, to create in this place an expanse of scenery like never seen before.”

“My design for the pavilion plays with our perspectives of the built environment against the backdrop of a natural landscape,” Ishigami said. Photo: Serpentine Galleries/Junya Ishigami + Associates

The temporary structure, which the Serpentine Gallery has erected every year since 2000, is one of the world’s most prominent architectural commissions. A different architect is selected to design the pavilion every year, and the artist chosen must not have completed any projects in the U.K. before. Past participants include Zaha Hadid, Bjarke Ingels, Peter Zumthor, Francis Kéré, and Frida Escobedo. Ishigami is the fourth Japanese architect to be chosen for the project.

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Ishigami worked as an architect at SANAA before founding his prize-winning firm, Junya Ishigami + Associates, in 2004. In 2010, he was the winner of the Golden Lion award at the Venice Biennale of Architecture and was the subject of a major solo exhibition at the Fondation Cartier Pour l’art Contemporain in 2018 that will travel to Shanghai later this year. Ishigami is known for designs with dreamlike qualities that incorporate the natural world—such as landscapes, forests, and clouds—in an architectural practice that places humankind as part of nature.

The 2019 Serpentine Pavilion will be open from June 20 to October 6 in London’s Hyde Park.

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