From March 21 2015 Hauser & Wirth Somerset present the Radić Pavilion at Durslade Farm, Bruton. Designed by Chilean architect Smiljan Radić, this unique structure was first unveiled as the Serpentine Gallery 2014 Pavilion.
Since 2000, the Serpentine Galleries have run an annual programme of temporary structures by internationally-renowned architects. The pavilion sits naturally within the landscape at Hauser & Wirth Somerset; positioned at the end of Oudolf Field – the landscaped garden designed by Piet Oudolf – it creates a dialogue between the gallery complex and pavilion, and their relationship with the garden.
Visitors to the arts centre will have the opportunity to walk around, through and underneath the pavilion. To coincide with the launch of the pavilion, a series of exhibitions, events and installations on the theme of architecture has been programmed.
The Radić Pavilion is part of a history of small romantic constructions seen in parks or large gardens, the so-called follies, which were hugely popular from the late 16th century to the beginning of the 19th century. In general, follies appear as ruins or worn away by time, displaying an extravagant, surprising and often primitive nature. These characteristics artificially dissolve the temporal and physical limits of the constructions themselves with their natural surroundings.
This pavilion takes these principles and applies them to a contemporary architectural language. Thus, the unusual shape and sensual qualities of the pavilion have a strong physical impact on the visitor. The simultaneously enclosed and open volumes of the structure explore the relationship between the surrounding environment and the interior of the pavilion. From the outside, visitors see a fragile shell in the shape of a hoop suspended on large quarry stones. Appearing as if they had always been part of the landscape these stones are used as supports, giving the pavilion on the one hand a physical weight and on the other holding a structure characterised by lightness and fragility. The shell, which is white, translucent and made of fibreglass, contains an interior that is organised around an empty patio at ground level, giving the sensation that the entire volume is floating. The shell's surface appears torn thereby incorporating the surroundings of the garden into the interior. The floor is grey wooden decking as if the interior was more a terrace rather than a protected interior space.
– Smiljan Radić, 2014
Photos: Ken Adlard