Asif Khan

Future Memory Pavilion

Gallery / Text

The pavillion was located on the lawn in front of Singapore’s oldest national monument, the National Museum of Singapore. The permeable structure framed a one-month evolving performance of two materials, sand and ice. Materials which embody memories of Singapore’s historical context and contemporary attitude to climate and land reclamation.

Singapore’s physical landscape today can be traced through the movement of sand, as its natural topography is continually altered and expanded by reclaiming land from the sea. Naturally occurring slabs of lake ice were first imported to Singapore more than 150 years ago for cooling purposes. The two elements exist along side each other in the pavilion; one side contains the ice as a 4m high cone shaped block and in the other sand continuously falls through an hour glass structure. 'Over the next few days, as the pavilion takes shape and as the ice and sand change the look inside it will be an exploration of the idea of losing something to gain something.'

The pavilion defines a public realm of the museum with the form of two intersecting cones. The form is intentionally monumental, celebrating the two materials and suggesting a homage to the lost hills of Singapore. The pavilion frames the space rather than enclosing it, thus inviting visitors to experience subtle environmental changes and embrace natural phenomenon, unlike most buildings in Singapore that offer a drastically modified climate condition.

The Future Memory Pavilion was constructed from a slender steel M frame and 3.5km of black marine rope. Ropes are a material synonymous with shipping and bring to mind Singapore’s key position as a port and island nation.

 

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