Lina Ghotmeh: À Table
On June 9th, the Serpentine unveiled its 22nd Pavilion, designed by Paris-based architect Lina Ghotmeh, at Serpentine South. Titled À Table, after the French phrase for ‘time to eat, the Pavilion will remain up through 29th October 2023.
The 2023 Serpentine Pavilion, designed by Paris-based architect Lina Ghotmeh, is a beautifully constructed gathering place whose very name asks us to come, sit together and talk. À Table is a French phrase that means ‘time to eat’ but implies a larger meaning around the importance of dialogue and shared meals. To reinforce this call, Ghotmeh has included tables and stools that curve around the inside perimeter of the wooden structure, offering a place for people to escape the heat or rain, sit down and engage in conversation. “The Pavilion rises as a wooden structure in keeping with the natural surroundings, inviting us to sit around exquisitely crafted stools and tables and take in the surroundings,” states Ghotmeh.
Ghotmeh has centered her architectural practice around a commitment to a fair and sustainable architecture. In projects such as Zero Carbon Hotel Project or the Sara Hildén Art Museum in Finland, Ghotmeh shows a sensitivity to the location and an understanding of designing spaces that have a minimal-environmental impact.
The Serpentine Pavilion is no different. Made predominately from bio-sourced and low carbon materials, the structure reflects Ghotmeh’s interest in connecting her designs with nature, its form and shape responding to the shape of surrounding landscape. The light weight timber structure is demountable and can be reinstalled elsewhere. The exterior wooden panels of the Pavilion have laser cut, leaf like patterns, allowing in filtered light that creates reverberating reflections across the space. The Pavilion brings a feeling of privacy and protection, while also being open to all as an inviting, warm space.
“Considering food as an expression of care, the Pavilion’s design is a space for grounding and reflection on our relationship to land, nature and environment. By offering a moment of conviviality around a table, Ghotmeh welcomes us to share the ideas, concerns, joys, dissatisfactions, responsibilities, traditions, cultural memories, and histories that bring us together,” explain the curators.
A comprehensive catalogue has been published on the occasion of the Pavilion’s opening. Designed by Paris-based studio les Graphiquants, it features contributions by Ali Cherri, Beatriz Colomina, Bernard Comment, Fouad Elkoury, Simone Fattal and David Zilber.
Visitors can experience À Table at the Serpentine through October 29, 2023