"I tried to create something between nature and architecture" - Sou Fujimoto

In this movie filmed by Dezeen at the unveiling of this year's Serpentine Gallery Pavilion in London today, Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto explains how he used a rigid geometric grid to create a soft and natural atmosphere. Update: this interview is featured in Dezeen Book of Interviews, which is on sale now for £12.

"I tried to create something between nature and architecture"
Photograph by Iwan Baan

"The inspiration started from the beautiful surroundings," Fujimoto says. "I was so impressed by the beautiful green surroundings, so I tried to create in this green environment something between nature and architecture, tried to create a transparent structure that melts into the background."

"I tried to create something between nature and architecture"
Photograph by Iwan Baan

To achieve this, Fujimoto created his pavilion from a white lattice of steel poles, with variations in density creating a structure that appears more or less transparent depending on where you stand.

"The grid itself is quite straight, rigid and quite artificial," he says. "But when you have such a huge amount, it becomes more like an organic cloud-like or forest-like [structure].

"I tried to create something between nature and architecture"
Photograph by Iwan Baan

"I was fascinated by such a beautiful contrast [beween] the really sharp, artificial white grids and the organic, formless experience."

"I tried to create something between nature and architecture"
Image copyright Dezeen

Fujimoto goes on to reveal that it took him a while to work out how protect visitors to the pavilion from the rain. "We couldn't put a roof on [it] because it would spoil this beautiful structure," he says. "Finally we had the idea to use polycarbonate transparent discs," which slot in between the gaps in the lattice.

"I tried to create something between nature and architecture"
Image copyright Dezeen

The polycarbonate tiles are not just to provide shelter, Fujimoto says. "Sometimes, if the wind is coming, [the roof] starts to swing and [creates] a more soft atmosphere, and a beautiful contrast with the grid."

See our earlier story for more images of Sou Fujimoto's pavilion »

"I tried to create something between nature and architecture"
Sou Fujimoto

See all our stories about the Serpentine Gallery Pavilions »
See more architecture by Sou Fujimoto »