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Star shaped Serpentine Pavilion by Minsuk Cho

"What a mess, I love it" says commenter

In this week's comments update readers are discussing the announcement of this year's Serpentine Pavilion, designed by Mass Studies founder Minsuk Cho.

Named Archipelagic Void, the 23rd pavilion is set to open in London's Kensington Gardens in June 2024 and will consist of five structures described as "islands", arranged in a star shape around a central void.

Minsuk Cho Serpentine Pavilion 2024 plans
Minsuk Cho Serpentine Pavilion 2024 plans

"What a mess, I love it"

Commenters weren't all immediately won over by the design. "Not grabbing me", was JZ's initial reaction. Although they did allow for some optimism, writing "hope it ends up a pleasant surprise."

In a comment that was upvoted five times, Ati-st suggested "Serpentine should just cancel the pavilion programme and stop wasting building materials if they aren't committed to doing this properly anymore".

They continued "it's been a long while since they had anything inspiring there".

Souji was much less forgiving, declaring "this is just an eyesore".

However, JB embraced the designs, exclaiming "what a mess, I love it". Meanwhile, John argued that Cho's design was "much better than some in the previous years!"

What do you make of this year's Serpentine Pavilion? Join the discussion

The Line as part of Neom in Saudi Arabia a risk to birds
The Line megacity "to pose a substantial risk to migratory species"

"Humans are a horrible species"

Another story that got readers talking this week was about the impact that The Line megacity in Neom could have on birds.

The planned city in Saudi Arabia was highlighted as one of the most pressing conservation issues for 2024, due to the scale of The Line along with its planned mirrored facades, which have been highlighted as posing "a substantial risk to migratory species".

Readers largely shared this concern about the project. "Who knew a giant mirrored wall would have a big effect on wildlife," mocked Hosta.

Commenter J98A was also in disbelief. "Was this not considered before it was signed off? Or at least before the build began?" they asked. "Stupidly obvious."

"The first thing I thought about when I saw this design was the birds," wrote Henry. "Maybe it should be re-rendered to include splatters and bird corpses...or just not built," they suggested.

For JZ, this all led to the simple conclusion that "humans are a horrible species".

Do you agree? Join the discussion ›

Komma micro vehicle by Lowie Vermeersch
"Making cars electric is not enough" says Lowie Vermeersch

"Yes yes yes. At last. This is the holy grail"

Also stirring up interest in the comments section was an interview with former Ferrari-designer Lowie Vermeersch about Komma, a new type of micro vehicle designed to take up less space on roads and use less materials to manufacture.

Some readers were on board with the idea. "With climate change, there could be a huge paradigm shift in personal and public transportation," mused Dik Coates.

Adrian James was impressed by the design, declaring "yes yes yes. At last. This is the holy grail". Colin MacGillivray agreed and dubbed it "the future of urban transport".

However, on the other side of the argument, Marc Sicard wrote "almost as much material as a car for the same functionality as a bike". They concluded, "ridiculous, and no thanks".

Could this be the future of urban transport? Join the discussion ›

Comments Update

Dezeen is the world's most commented architecture and design magazine, receiving thousands of comments each month from readers. Keep up to date on the latest discussions on our comments page and subscribe to our weekly Debate newsletter, where we feature the best reader comments from stories in the last seven days.