The pavilion is the architectural form of the moment, enabling emerging architects to make their mark. Often ephemeral and orientated to a specific function, they are less expensive than their more permanent architectural cousins, which allows for more experimentation or inventiveness than in larger structures.
Tents, bandstands, displays, places for sitting, listening, seeing, and being seen, pavilions have myriad forms and as many functions. For architects and designers, they offer unique opportunities to experiment with form, construction, material, structure, surface, and texture, often as prototypes for larger buildings or as purely artistic pursuits. A pavilion’s particular location also offers rich possibilities for interaction with the landscapes, streetscapes, and peoplescapes around it. Pavilions can be temples to digital interaction or provide oases of calm and isolation.
The New Pavilions features a selection of the best examples produced in recent years, more than eighty projects, chosen by Philip Jodidio, one of the most widely knowledgeable writers on global architecture. From the cutting-edge forms of Sou Fujimoto to Zaha Hadid’s Chanel pavilion, from small structures created entirely out of farm waste to a mirrored carapace conceived by Olafur Eliasson, each pavilion provides a lesson in the extreme possibilities of built form and demonstrates that many of the biggest ideas in architecture start small.
Philip Jodidio studied art history and economics at Harvard and edited Connaissance des Arts for over twenty years. His books include Tree Houses and Cabins.