A Room for London is a unique project that offers numerous ways in which architecture can engage with the city and its inhabitants. From the outset, the process was highly collaborative model for future working.
The client was Living Architecture working with Artangel and Southbank Centre. David Kohn Architects invited artist Fiona Banner to collaborate and went on to win the open international competition with more than 500 entrants.
The brief was for a room from which two guests could contemplate their relationship to London and the wider world in the Olympic Year. Their proposal Roi des Belges operates on many levels: A misplaced boat, a whimsical anomaly, a space out of place; a breath-taking view; a rich interior with layers of narrative clues connecting to Joseph Conrad's novella Heart of Darkness, a story narrated by the Thames of a journey out of London, the dark heart of an empire; a near off-grid experience with 60% of power being delivered by wind turbines atop the mast; lastly, a performance space from which writers and musicians tell their stories, to be broadcast globally.
At the end of the year it will set sail to be discovered by others.