Folly (architecture): a whimsical or extravagant structure, built to serve as a conversation piece, lend interest to a view, commemorate a person or event. A temporary pavilion in 2014 for the Diamond Jubilee which was in 2012 is certainly a temporal extravagance. Yet regardless, an structure commissioned today has an unwritten desire to bring in the punters, the photos. Archi-tourism results in event souvenirs. Last weekend I was in Rome where you can buy an assortment of Fontana Trevi Fotos, Colosseum trinkets… I didn’t see a Pantheon panattone but hey! Whilst bling buildings do not have a monopoly on architectural commodification (icon jewellery), all those single follies should still give a meaningful ring to their existence! Could a bouncy castle win the Stirling Prize?
The WHAT_architecture Diamond Pavilion is a relocatable pavilion that embraces the legacy of QE2’s Diamond Jubilee Year through its transparent, cut facetted form. It is the crown jewel that enhances both place and occasion in Winchester’s events calendar. The project follows the 5C characteristics of the diamond trade but transforms cut, carat, clarity, colour and certification into cut (form), clarity (transparency), colour (opacity), change (enclosure, location) and cost. Oh, BTW, it’s inflatable within 30minutes. Think: Bouncy Windsor Castle!