Sensing Spaces: Architecture Reimagined
25 January – 6 April 2014
Installations and works in various media by leading architects and urban designers.
In a show unlike anything the Royal Academy has staged before, industry leaders hailing from China to Chile, Burkina Faso to Berlin, were challenged to find ‘a new perspective’ on architecture.
The resulting display is a kaleidoscopic mix of textures, scents, lighting and colour that raises fundamental questions about the nature of building design and how it affects our lives. These site specific installations are set within the Academy's Grade II* listed galleries, encouraging visitors to reflect similarly on the architectural history of Burlington House.
Participants include Kengo Kuma, the mastermind behind the upcoming V&A Dundee and Álvaro Siza, a former winner of the Pritzker Prize.
Pezo von Ellichshausen's monumentally sized wooden tower installation was built using a staggering 27,185 screws and 72,800 nails. Four turret-like structures hide secret stairwells, inviting visitors to climb towards the top reaches of the gallery's arched golden ceiling. A unique vantage point that you're unlikely to experience again.
Meanwhile, find the centre of Li Xiaodong's hazel labyrinth to see if you agree with its defining premise, 'what is important is what is contained, not the container', the words of Ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Zi. Also not to be missed are Kuma's scented bamboo installation, inspired by the Japanese smell ceremony Ko-Do, and Diébédo Francis Kéré's tunnel, where you can physically interact with the structure's fabric.