The center-piece of this year’s European Biennial of Contemporary Art, also known as Manifesta, is certainly drawing out the crowds. Taking the concept of art out of the four walls of a traditional gallery and onto Lake Zurich, a floating timber pavilion is welcoming walkers, wanderers, drinkers, viewers and even swimmers on its deck until September 18th, 2016.
The temporary installation has been created by Studio Tom Emerson and a team of thirty students from ETH Zurich – consistently ranked as one of the best universities in continental Europe – and was designed as “a place for both encounters and education, a place for both passing the time with physical activity and with intellectual pursuits,” as the project’s creators describe. The Pavilion of Reflections combines a pier-like structure with a giant LED screen, a stand for spectators, a swimming pool and a bar. The temporary water-top square is a casual meeting place and a public, open-air swimming area in the daytime, while at night, it becomes an indie cinema screen, showcasing work from students at Zurich University of the Arts.
The public pool integrated in the Pavilion of Reflections has some significance: bathing and swimming are long Swiss traditions, and Zurich is known to be the city with most public pools per capita in the world. According to the designers, the tradition of bathhouses and pools is especially important in this day and age, as it creates “a platform for Zurich society to disrobe, removing status symbols in an egalitarian encounter.” Check out the photos below: