South London’s answer to the Serpentine Pavilion is a multi-hued ‘party hat’.
The cuboid Colour Palace perches in the garden of Dulwich Picture Gallery next to Sir John Soane’s Victorian building and Rick Mather’s 2000 extension. It’s the design of emerging architecture firm Pricegore and artist Yinka Ilori.
DPG director Jennifer Scott describes the louvred pavilion as ‘a party hat sitting on columns that look like elephants’ feet’.
The pavilion’s task is to reach a more diverse audience. Architect Dingle Price’s interpretation of that was ‘to bring the European and African continents together’. He cites the big West African community on nearby Rye Lane in Peckham, where Pricegore has its studio – a gritty contrast to rarified Dulwich.
He says: ’The continents have two key architectural commonalities, using geometric patterns to adorn buildings, and raising precious buildings (such as dovecots and grain stores) on massive feet.’
The temporary pavilion’s simple materials include timber slats and columns made from drainage channels. For the geometric pattern, British-Nigerian Ilori drew on the fabric stalls of Lagos’ Balogun Market. Meanwhile, the crenellations around the top ‘were inspired by the decorative façade of a beautiful mosque in Northern Nigeria. They give it a palatial feel,’ Ilori adds.