Gagarin: the "THING" pavilion

proposal for a pavilion in "Museum Garden", London, the UK, 2015

Project designed with Francesco Garrone & Gianmaria Grasso 

The aim of the “Thing Pavilion”, is to offer an engaging spatial experience to its visitors. To do so, the project enables multiple meanings and multiple disciplinary lines of reasoning to approach the issue of “Energy”.

 

1. Energy: (ΔK)=W=maΔs.

According to the Newtonian physics, energy is associated with the work produced by a net of forces. In this pavilion, the net of forces is a field of gas balloons connected to a bouncy trampoline (pavilion's ground). Consequently, any balloon will be moving according to the curvature of the ground that is warped by the people entering the pavilion. Indeed, as soon as the people enter the pavilion’s inner space, everything becomes unstable and continuously changing, as in a chaotic system. In this pavilion, the visitor is the main actor in a spatial performance about energy. Moreover, this project is meant to be a “Thing”: an object that can be entered only by distorting the surfaces dividing the interior of the pavilion from its outside.

 

2. Metaphors

Parallel to the definition of an energetic and low-cost field inside the pavilion, our project wants to use metaphorical effects to revive the kind of aesthetic associated with the “Space Age” of the 60's: an era when humans thought that the resources were endless and that progress would have been inevitable and constant. To do so, our project is also meant as a sculptural object recalling the aesthetics of that particular age. The pavilion is in fact a thing touching the ground with few supports as the “Apollo” lunar modules and the colours we decided to use are typical of both the space-Aeronautics’ and science fiction’s aesthetics. Even though this choice might appear as a mere stylistic approach, by the application of this particular aesthetic, we want to make a call for the need of optimism for our future. Optimism needed nowadays more than ever.