London architect Studio Weave has designed a permanent pavilion – inspired by a cabinet of curiosities – for St James’s Market in central London, set to open early next month
Dubbed ‘The Safe Deposite’, the commission is part of Make Architects’ £400 million St James’s Market redevelopment, due to complete later this year. Make’s 28,000m² mixed-use scheme, for the Crown Estate, has transformed two Piccadilly blocks between Regent Street and Haymarket into offices, residential and retail.
Studio Weave’s installation will host public performances, events and exhibitions. It is the third in a series of public artworks curated by Futurecity and inspired by the area’s historic association with master craftwork, and references the design language of Victorian safe deposit boxes which formerly occupied the area.
The interior ceiling is decorated with a wheatsheaf motif inspired by the sacks of wheat historically used as currency for barter and exchange in the old St James’s Market.
The pavilion’s inaugural exhibition will focus on local history and the poetic ballad The Handsome Butcher of St James’s Market. It is being delivered by brand and design studio dn&co with illustrator James Graham.
St James’s portfolio manager Anthea Harries commented: ‘St James’s has a rich cultural heritage focused around high-quality craftsmanship, and this is something we wanted to put right at the heart of our vision for reinvigorating St James’s Market as a world-class destination.
‘We’re delighted to be able to display such eminent designers in the development’s public spaces, each inspired by the unique history of the area.’
The AJ recently launched a competition in association with the Crown Estate. To find out more about the Future Office contest, click here