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Handprints decorate conical structure for festival launch

Landscapes | July 1, 2008 | By:

The public lend a hand at the launch of the London Festival of Architecture.

Foster + Partners successfully built a conical structure, interwoven with fabric panels hand-printed by the public to kick off the Kensington and Chelsea hub of the London Festival of Architecture on 21 June. A focal point of the Exhibition Road Festival, the tensile structure was hauled into place with a tug-of-war rope by the public. More than 4,000 visitors walked through the 10m-high structure in the afternoon and enjoyed its sound installation by Bill Fontana. Overall turnout on the day was high – more than 30,000 visitors were reported at the event.Alistair Lenczner of Foster + Partners said: “The day was a lot of fun for all involved and a real success. The London Festival of Architecture is a great opportunity to bring architecture to a wide audience. Our installation was designed as a celebration of the collaborations between people that create architecture, and in this case the public were very much part of that process. The handprints placed on the fabric symbolized the human input into the structure’s creation and Bill Fontana’s maritime-themed sound work complemented the nautical feel of the rigging-style ropes that formed the cable net structure.”

Structural and fabric fabrication assistance was provided by Architen Landrell.

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