A puzzle for the public as pavilion is erected in Fota


A pavilion designed by renowned architect Daniel Libeskind was erected in the grounds of Fota House in Co Cork yesterday.

The 35m by 18m pavilion, which rises 7m at its highest point, was commissioned by the Serpentine Gallery in London in 2001, and is being loaned to Fota House until December 31st.

The 18 Turns pavilion is an aluminium structure with angled planes, reflective surfaces and interlocking spiralling shapes.

It resembles a giant three-dimensional puzzle.

Libeskind, who was in Cork yesterday for the unveiling of the pavilion and a lecture at Cork Opera House, is a leading figure in the world of architectural design and practice.

The Polish architect won the competition for the Ground Zero master plan in New York.

His work also includes pieces in the Jewish Museum in Berlin and the Imperial War Museum North in Manchester.

Libeskind said the pavilion is "about fun . . . playful, for entertainment . . . a classical folly".

However, the pavilion is not just an object of beauty but of function.

While in situ at London's Kensington Gardens it hosted the BBC proms poetry readings and a series of debates on urban design.

Viewing of the pavilion is free. And with regular trains and buses to Fota from Cork city centre, it is expected that the structure will follow the London trend and large crowds will visit the pavilion throughout the year.

The pavilion is a Cork 2005 project.

It had been proposed and project-managed by Keogan Architects, and has been supported by the Office of Public Works (OPW).

It has been facilitated by the Fota Trust, through the offices of Prof Tom Raftery. He has welcomed the pavilion to Fota House and gardens.