For the last decade the Serpentine Gallery in London has commissioned a different architect each year to design an outdoor event space for their annual summer pavilion, a three month-long symposium on architecture. The practice of designing, building and removing the pavilion – all of which happens within the space of six months – is an architectural experiment in itself and is always greatly anticipated. This year the Serpentine Gallery has enlisted the services of Swiss architect Peter Zumthor who designed a walled-in garden, currently under construction in Kensington Gardens.
When Eli Broad first invited starchitect Renzo Piano to enter the competition to make sense of LACMA’s chaotic cluster of buildings in 2001, Piano declined, adding that “it’s very frustrating to play a good piece by a string quartet in the middle of three badly played rock concerts.” Ouch, take that, weird clump of old LACMA buildings. Soon after, Rem Koolhaas’ design was chosen, a ballsy plan that involved demolishing most of LACMA’s existing structures and building new galleries. Luckily, Broad and Co. came to their senses, threw out Koolhaas’ ridiculous idea and begged Piano to reconsider.