2021 Antepavilion Architecture Design Contest, Hackney Architectural Competition News

2021 Antepavilion competition

9 Apr 2021

Antepavilion competition 2021

2021 Antepavilion Winner

The 2021 Antepavilion competition has taken place against the background of ongoing and increasingly bitter litigation in which Hackney desperately tries to assert its authority by closing down the now internationally recognised event. This background was fundamental to the ‘Bartizan’ brief and the criteria that the jury had to apply to select a winner. The selected structures would be required to be expressly temporary, mobile or transportable, or otherwise not caught by prohibitive planning constraints that the Council would be quick to adopt into their legal arsenal.

1st prize design:
2021 Antepavilion competition winner

In the circumstances the jury was much impressed by the quality and quantity of the entries received. In particular the imaginative and resourceful engagement with the brief was especially appreciated. This feature of the year’s entries and the possibility that the Council will succeed in making 2021 the fifth and last Antepavilion Competition has prompted a departure from the format of previous years.

Firstly the jury was torn by the quality of the entries over both the shortlist selection and the final selection of a winner. It also found some entries not selected for the shortlist to have such visual or imaginative appeal that a special ‘Razzle Dazzle’ prize was created for the best three (1st, 2nd, and 3rd).

The hung jury at the shortlisting meeting resulted in the longest shortlist to have been selected in the five years of the competition. This amounted to seven contenders, all of which had the potential to be defensible, by different means, against further attacks from the Council.

2nd prize design:
2021 Antepavilion competition 2nd prize
image : Effie Paleologou

At the final selection it resulted in a decision to select not just an overall winner, as in previous years, but to augment the winning entry with a parallel, early-summer, temporary installation of an exciting tensegrity structure where impermanence and very rapid demountability and redeployment are the essence of the design.

The winning entry is the elegant and collapsible ‘Antechamber’ by Studio Nima Sardar. This utilises salvaged timbers from the dismantled Potemkin Theatre (2019). It also realises the recurrent camera-obscura theme from many previous years’ entries, none of which have ever been selected. It is to be hoped that this Victorian fairground theme will resonate with the Hackney planners’ concept of harmony with heritage architecture, as they apply it to the 1900s to 1960s wharf buildings now adorned with references to a rich range of historic eras. If not, it collapses nicely for transportation and safe custody.


2021 Antepavilion competition winner

The Studio says:

“The Chamber is not site specific and can be transported, much like a camera, to wherever it is needed next. Representing the practicalities of the camera, the pavilion can be demounted and packed. The two components of the base structure fit into one another, while the folding fabric top structure folds down into the base – turning into a boxed item easy to transport.

A non-confrontational yet non-conformist attitude to Hackney Council’s litigation. Nothing more anarchitecture than a bird’s nest.

While the folding away and relocating is a way of responding to the Hackney Fight, the other way we thought to address it was using a non-confrontational language. From readings of the injunction, it was clear the council used quotes and misquotes from articles and even competition entries to justify their case. So we approached the fight with an in-direct non-conformist attitude.”




The team say:
“Our bartizans of tensegrity bamboo towers, or ‘beacons’ as we lovingly call them, were born out of a need to speak truth to power and challenge the mainstream discourse. We used our beacons to physically occupy a space and disrupt the status quo— forcing our demand to be seen and heard.

This pavilion is an evolution of our beacons. The beacons embody the characteristics necessary in guerrilla style confrontation with authority: agility, flexibility, adaptability, transportability, and security. They are instruments of nonviolent direct action in the face of encroaching authoritarianism.

2021 Antepavilion competition Razzle Dazzle Prize Winners

1st PRIZE : OPERATION RAZZLE DAZZLE by James Deru, Andrew Kwok, David Majoe

2021 Antepavilion competition Razzle Dazzle Prize Winner

2nd PRIZE : THE ELEPHANT IN THE HAT by Eric Wong and Michael Quach

2021 Antepavilion competition Razzle Dazzle Prize 2nd prize

3rd PRIZE : FLIPTHEBIRD(BOX) by the United Suburbs

2021 Antepavilion competition Razzle Dazzle Prize 3rd prize

E: [email protected]
P: +447740307474

2021 Antepavilion competition images / information received 080421

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Comments / photos for the 2021 Antepavilion competition page welcome