Dezeen Magazine

Flea Folly Architects designs high temple of timber in a monastic archway

Clerkenwell Design Week 2016: London studio Flea Folly Architects has partnered with Hakwood to create an installation of stacked wood that references the monastic past of London's St John's Gate (+ slideshow). 

The 4.5-metre-tall structure, titled HakFolly, has been constructed from Dutch flooring company Hakwood's finished planks, as well as leftover timber elements created during the manufacture of floorboards.

HakFolly at Clerkenwell design week

The installation creates a wooden tunnel within the arch of St John's Gate – a former priory entrance and one of the last architectural remnants of Clerkenwell's monastic history.

Flea Folly Architects decided to use stacked wood after a visit to Hakwood's factory in the Netherlands, where timber is often stored in "unusual tiered structures" that wouldn't typically be seen by the public.

Described as a "high temple", the Hakfolly installation tapers into a peaked roof, which contrasts with the rounded shape of the surrounding arch.

According to the architects, the structure aims to create a "fleeting moment of peace and tranquility" that links back to the area's monastic past.

HakFolly at Clerkenwell design week

"Hakwood were keen for this installation not to be a promotion for their products but an opportunity to show both the company and product in a different and eye-catching light," said Flea Folly Architects' Thomas Hillier.

The HakFolly installation will remain in place for the duration of Clerkenwell Design Week, which takes place from 24 to 26 May.

HakFolly at Clerkenwell design week

The historic St Johns Gate archway each year houses a key installation during the festival. In 2015 it was designer Sebastian Cox and sculptor Laura Ellen Bacon's The Invisible Store of Happiness, comprising a skeletal wooden frame and intricate, ribbon-like swathes.

Other installations on display during this year's Clerkenwell Design Week include Giles Miller Studio's large-scale abstract signs made from square glass tiles – which will guide visitors through the festival – and a deconstructed barn designed by White Arkitekter, placed in St John's Square.

Also making its debut during the festival is Benjamin Hubert's made-to-measure 3D-printed wheelchair and a range of office chairs for restless workers created by Forpeople for Herman Miller.