Serpentine pavilion 2017: a shimmering African canopy spreads out over Kensington Gardens

By Oliver Wainwright

Inspired by a tree used as a meeting place in his native village of Gando, architect Francis Kéré has brought a piece of Burkina Faso to London – a deceptively simple roof that seems to float above the greenery

“I almost hope it will rain,” says Hans Ulrich Obrist, artistic director of the Serpentine, standing beneath the soaring timber canopy of the gallery’s summer pavilion, which plunges inwards to form a conical funnel where rain will be channelled into a circular waterfall. “It has definitely been designed with British summers in mind.”

The opening of the annual pavilion has been plagued by untimely downpours in previous years, putting optimistic architects from warmer climes to the test, but this year African architect Francis Kéré seems to have brought the scorching heat of Burkina Faso to Kensington Gardens.

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Source: Serpentine pavilion 2017: a shimmering African canopy spreads out over Kensington Gardens

    

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