London Open Form Pavilion of Air

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London W2 3XA, UK

Walking piece details

Cost Free

A complete primer on the Open Form Pavilion of Air series & information on the Dublin Pavilion via RTÉ Culture
The Dublin Open Form Pavilion of Air (Baile Átha Cliath Pailliún Aeir i bhFoirm Oscailte) is a sister work to the London Pavilion.

The London Open Form Pavilion of Air audiowork is a floating roof of sound, triggered by GPS and accessed via a smartphone, headphones and the app. One of 15 locations in 9 countries in the Open Form Pavilion of Air series, following Pavilions for New Music Dublin, Warsztaty Kultury (Lublin, PL), Meetfactory (Prague, CZ), Sirius Arts Centre (Cobh, IE), Folldal Kommune (NO), Struer Tracks festival/Sound Art Lab (DK), Piteå Science Park (SWE), Kunstkvarteret Lofoten (NO) and Bergen Architecture School (NO). Inspired by Polish architects Oskar & Zofia Hansen’s “Open Form” architectural concept, they use sound and site-mapping to offer a playful renewal and reframing of public space as an essential place of engagement for the community.

The Pavilion’s area takes the form of a 160 x 160 metre arrow pointing west to Ireland & the sunset. Invisibly occupying part of the Gardens, itself once a King’s playground, the work’s concept echoes & reframes the fading colonial notion of a “… vast [British] empire on which the sun never sets” (the words of British colonial administrator Earl George Macartney in his “An Account of Ireland in 1773 by a Late Chief Secretary of that Kingdom”).

By walking through different zones in the specific area by the Serpentine Gallery in Kensington Gardens while using your mobile phone, the Echoes app and headphones, you become a participatory listener producing a composition in real-time. Your navigation creates a unique choreography via GPS, combining and changing sounds mapped in the Gardens through the app. Hear the park and its context become transformed by the many sounds forming this floating acoustic architecture, revealing an immersive, profoundly spatial and physical experience. The Pavilion has no visible presence outside the app and can only be accessed and enjoyed on-site in Kensington Gardens adjacent to the Serpentine Gallery (on the opposite side to the Serpentine Pavilion).


Launch: 7 September 2023 as part of Open House London Festival

Robert Curgenven

Robert Curgenven

Robert Curgenven is an Ireland-based, Australian-born artist producing albums, performances and installations. His work emphasizes physicality, our embodied response to sound and its correspondence to location, air, weather and architecture. His recorded o...

Near London W2 3XA, UK

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