Our clearest memory of visiting the site is of the delicate iron structures of the long railway sheds. The arrays of fine trusses held in the light created a lasting image, linking back to the powerful industrial heritage of the surroundings. The combination of filigree structure, clouds of steam and light create an almost dream-like atmosphere.
We have tried to recreate this sense of weightless, ephemeral quality by making a canopy of extremely fine stainless steel rods supporting a glass roof. The structural diagrid is entirely contemporary, while it’s hovering form echoes the surrounding buildings. It makes reference to the cloud-like metal sculptures of Ryuji Nakamura. Our design is one single irreducible idea, an exquisite piece of furniture placed in the square. It makes reference to the rich history of the place while pointing towards its present reinvention.
The canopy creates a space for gathering that is highly transparent but allows people to shelter from inclement weather. Our ambition is to make it so light that it feels as though it is being held to the ground. Observed in sunlight or lit internally, crowded or empty, reacting to different kinds of weather, it will constantly change depending on the conditions surrounding it.