If these Walls could Talk

If these Walls could Talk

Architect
Arctic Associates
Location
London, United Kingdom
Project Year
2010
Category
Art Galleries

If these Walls could Talk

Arctic Associates as Architects

In his poem , Composed upon Westminster Bridge, William Wordsworth describes the divine and rare experience of finding the busy city fast asleep at dawn, and defines in narrative the beauty of the moment. The scene is set in poetry and the narrative continues as an unfolding story book in a journey through the design process and installation into a response from each guest as they stay in the room and finally in the deconstruction of the room and its reconstruction to another site. The Queen Elizabeth Hall roof provides stunning vistas of the River Thames and anchors itself between both the Hungerford and the Waterloo bridges. The room allows reflection upon these views, as sunrise and sunset becomes a tempo to which guests in the room play out their role in the on-going story.


As guests arrive at the south bank of the Thames and make their way past the continuing narrative of performing arts, they will be taken up the walkway flanked with a roof top garden and greeted by the multifaceted façade of the Room which glistens like a jewel and crowns the top of the Queen Elizabeth Hall. An uplifting entrance into the dome reveals a warm and light filled space. Sunlight playfully dances across the interior space as a sundial reflecting the time of day. At night, the room brings an elegant beauty to the Queen Elizabeth Hall roof with its own unique light display.


The structure is composed of individual self-supporting structural units cut out of a single sheet of perforated steel minimising the amount of material required. Units are to be either assembled into 11 larger structural shells to be transported to site or the individual tessellated units can be site assembled. Each prefabricated tessellated unit is fitted with smart glazing system or a composite panel providing thermal and acoustic insulation creating protection from the elements under the dome.

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