An Eloquent Path

Deyan Sudjic 

Pavilion, 1993, Manchester Polytechnic

It is perhaps more fruitful to look at what Thomas Heatherwick does, than to try define what he is. Heatherwick himself is hesitant about such definitions, in part because it is only now after almost 25 years in practice that he feels confident about what he will be doing next. What he does ranges from the ingenious, to the poetic. He designed a steel bridge in London that unrolls like a magic carpet when required, and rolls up out of the way when not needed. He transformed a grain silo in Cape Town into an art gallery using the humblest of materials, digitally scanning a single ear of corn found on the silo floor, inflating it to the size of a building and using it as the template to carve out an atrium at the heart of a cluster of giant concrete tubes to create a space with some of the complexity of a Gaudí cathedral. And for the opening ceremony for the London Olympics, he designed the cauldron and the copper petals used to ignite the flame for the games... [+]

Included Tags: