Whether temporary or permanent, pavilions and urban installations represent an opportunity for architects to experiment with different shapes, materials, and textures. The results are often theatrical, welcoming visitors to new types of spaces, and blending the exterior and the interior. Pavilions are often commissioned for events, exhibitions, or cultural programs, offering opportunities to explore innovative materials, construction techniques, and spatial concepts on a smaller scale. Some events, like the Serpentine in UK or the MPavilion in Australia, propose a yearly reimagining of their structures, offering opportunities for established and emerging architects to express themselves. Others, like the Venice Biennale, reuse the permanent garden pavilions, but invite curators to prepare exhibitions to reimagine them for every edition.
This week’s curated selection of Best Unbuilt Architecture highlights projects submitted by the ArchDaily community showcasing pavilions and urban installations proposed in various environments, from urban plazas to agricultural fields or even airports. In Frankfurt, a translucent foliage-covered structure aims to honor the memory of a lost synagogue. in Ukraine, a visitor center reimagines an industrial landscape into an attractive meeting place, while a decentralized installation in the Netherlands hopes to bring communities together by collecting and sharing stories on scents. Whether temporary or permanent, these projects aim to provoke reflection and contemplation, while addressing larger themes of sustainability, resource availability, or the role of social spaces.