Pigeon Spike Pavilion, Sky Pavilion Competition, London, 2014
In London, we share the city with organisms who inhabit both the land and the sky. Thousands of them. So many that our architecture has become ornamentalized with an infrastructure to separate the birds from it. If we play out this infrastructure to the extreme, it becomes super-ornamental, but also allows us earth-bound vertical beings to imagine how it might feel to take flight: to be pushed away from architecture.
Goosebumps Pavilion uses a simple translation from vertical line to horizontal line, as pigeon-spikes translate from their usual level placement to a vertical placement which addresses the position of the human body. Through this translation, the enclosure shifts from wall to roof and back to wall again, creating a pavilion that seems to lift itself toward the sky.
Entering through the space at the south, between the two wings, the pavilion frames toward an oculus in the roof, which focuses the gaze on the sky above. Continuing both northwards and upwards, and the canopy meets at a point. This point acts as a gnomon, or pointer for a sundial which casts a shadow in a water basin marking the hours over the summer months during which the pavilion is installed.
The pavilion’s form and materiality draws in the sky itself, as well as referencing the inhabitants of the sky: the sun and the birds, and provokes the consideration of our alternate world in the sky.