On a grassy slope in Bedford, New York, American practice OLI Architecture has installed a cabin-inspired singular pavillon to provide a permanent home for Richard Serra’s sculpture ‘London Cross’. A serene sanctuary where time and space merge, ‘LX Pavilion’ elevates the physical experience of the artwork through soft indirect lighting and a steel-resembling facade.
The firm designed the building as a monolithic bespoke container with three entrances, wrapped in a charred Accoya timber rainscreen to blend in with its natural surroundings. The pavilion was built using the Japanese joinery construction and wood-charring technique Shou Sugi Ban, a method of timber coloring and preservation which lends the building’s exterior a textural quality. Designed to naturally acquire a patina over time, the weathering silver facade emphasizes the passing of time and the temporality of the artwork housed within its walls. Behind it is a white gallery space, sized to match the proportions of ‘London Cross’ and its 15-ton plates of weathering steel. Inside, the artwork takes center stage with one plate running along the floor and the other suspended overhead. A roof with sawtooth north-facing skylights distribute soft lighting into the pavilion, minimizing shadows and harmonizing the controlled nature of the gallery with the feeling of being outdoors.