The Flagship

A Political Pavilion.

Read any headline today. The greatest social and political deficiency is not the lack of agreement on issues such as ‘left and right’ or ‘globalisation and nationalism’, but rather the need for mutual understanding and discussion at the interface between opposing views. The digital age has made it possible to filter news and social interaction based on pre-determined criteria and preferences. This polarisation of interest groups has often resulted in destructive confrontation when these clashes occur in the real world. In four words, we need to talk…

According to UK law, since2012,it is now permitted to display flags of a wider range of national, sub- national, community and international flags. Curiously, ‘there are no restrictions on the size of [the] flag’ [1], considering that this flag is erected on a rooftop. The antepavilion takes advantage of this by acting as a Flagship – A unique 3-dimensional flag structure, it argues that it meets the definition of a flag as : a [Continuous] piece of fabric of distinctive design that is used as a symbol (as of a nation), as a signalling device, or as a decoration[2]. Furthermore, There are also ‘no restrictions on the size of any character or symbol displayed on the flag’ [1]. Tensile fabric forms a taught wrap which serves as a canvas for the projection of artwork and film. International artists can use the structure as a base for the presentation of artworks with a global message.

The Flagship is designed to challenge rhetorics of ‘right’ and ‘left’ to create a circular and more intimate public space. The Flagship is created using a CNC prefabricated frame which is fixed to the structural roof platform. The radial design allows equity of views towards the pavilion from all angles. Within the flagship , a circular seating arrangement makes the space suitable for discussion and performance. The tensile fabric wrap allows these perimeter seats to provide a casual sense of comfort, much like a beach chair or hammock. The space is designed to be conducive to natural conversation and discussion. The form of the Flagship, it’s horizontal, diagonal and concentric form has been inspired by the geometric study of flags, known as vexillology. This approach draws on flag ratios from around the word to create a form that is novel yet familiar to nationals or residents from different countries.

[1] Flying Flags: A Plain English Guide – Ref: ISBN 9781409837091, Dept for Communities and Local Govt. 2012

[2] https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/flag

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