After Image – better known as the Dulwich Pavilion – was one of the triumphs of the 2017 London Festival of Architecture and is to find a new use when it becomes the focal point of Goose Green Primary School’s playground in East Dulwich, London in 2018.
Created by young emerging architecture practice IF_DO, the Dulwich Pavilion was the result of a design competition organised by the Gallery in partnership with the London Festival of Architecture and Almacantar in the Gallery’s Bicentenary year. From June until deconstruction began last week, the pavilion formed the backdrop for a summer of artistic and cultural events, and became a popular destination where thousands of people came to relax and enjoy themselves during long summer evenings. Hugely popular with the public and highly praised by architecture critics, the pavilion is now collecting awards for its design and structural innovation – most recently the American Architecture Prize.
Designed for deconstruction and reuse in order to prevent waste and provide a sustainable legacy, the pavilion will be moved to storage until next summer it will be rebuilt as a permanent outdoor space at Goose Green Primary School. The school will work closely with IF_DO who will continue to act as design guardians for the newly reinstalled Pavilion. Children and parents will also be encouraged to have their say on how they would like the pavilion to be repurposed. Whilst the timber roof is fixed, the flexible nature of the pavilion and its moveable mirrored panels means that the school can create a bespoke space.
The addition of the pavilion is perfect timing for the school, who have been liaising with children and parents to improve the current playground area which currently lacks a safe outdoor, waterproof play area and outdoor learning space. They approached the Dulwich Picture Gallery who selected the school as an ideal candidate to receive the pavilion for a clear local community use. Goose Green School will now start raising funds for the reconstruction of the pavilion, which is due for summer 2018.
For us, the Dulwich Pavilion has been an outstanding project and we are so pleased that it will continue to delight and benefit the local community. At the LFA we are determined that pavilions should never be follies: as well as creating something useful for the Gallery this summer and a building that celebrated amazing architectural talent here in London, we wanted to commission a building that could have a positive and useful legacy. IF_DO have delivered exactly that, and we are delighted that the Pavilion will live on in an exciting reincarnation.
Simon Wattam, Head of Goose Green School said: “The pupils, my fellow staff and I are hugely excited about this project. It will give us a unique opportunity to involve the children in the creative process and when it is finished it will completely change the use of the playground when it rains. At the moment the children have no option but to crowd inside. We’re thrilled to be working with the Gallery to carry on the legacy of such a wonderful, community minded project.”
Al Scott, Director, IF_DO, said: “It was always our hope that the pavilion would be reused, and so we are excited that Goose Green School is providing a permanent home for the structure. We have enjoyed watching people engaging with the pavilion this summer, and now look forward to seeing it re-appropriated for use by the pupils of Goose Green, and the opportunities it will bring for outdoor activities.”
Jennifer Scott, Sackler Director of Dulwich Picture Gallery said: “The Dulwich Pavilion project has transformed our grounds over the summer providing the Gallery with much needed space to broaden our events, schools and community programme to a wider audience. 40% of audiences to our Pavilion Lates programme were new to the Gallery. To know that the pavilion will have a legacy beyond this, meeting the needs of a school and community so local to us, is hugely exciting.”
Mike Hussey, Chief Executive of Almacantar said: “It will be fantastic to see such a successful architectural venture culminate in a long-lasting legacy for the local community and is a testament to IF_DO’s design concept that it has caught the imagination of so many. Almacantar are proud to ave supported such a bold and ambitious project.”