An exploration into the nature of a pavilion, Balmond’s Serpentine Pavilion collaboration with Rem Koolhaas in 2006 interrogated the concept of non-structure. This pavilion was an event, a ‘happening’ that marked the beginning of the popular Serpentine Marathons that have been held every year ever since.
Named The Cosmic Egg, it was comprised of a central, cubic amphitheatre above which a large spherical balloon acted as a canopy that could be raised into the air or lowered to cover the room below according to the weather. A work of anti-gravity architecture, no part of the pavilion held onto one another, and made from a translucent material, the structure could be illuminated to great effect at night.
About this project, Balmond says, ‘These Pavilions have evolved with various structural typologies and materials, provoking debate on architecture; this year, the exploration continues not only with typology and material but with the very definition of Pavilion.’