House of Flags

AY Architects, London, 2012

 

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House of Flags pays tribute to the diversity of the nations that took part in the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games

Conceived as a gigantic 'house of cards', it made the perfect backdrop for thousands of people who took their portraits in front of it on Parliament Square this summer.

206 panels depict the flag icons of the nations and combined make up a large building jigsaw, a ‘united’ house of shimmering colours, symbols and perforations. The exterior is vibrant, determined by the iconography of each flag, while the interior has a unified monochrome presence, created by the natural finish of the plywood which matches the weathered limestone of the Houses of Parliament.

As a three-dimensional puzzle, House of Flags can be reinstalled in new arrangements in the future. The structure is flat-pack, demountable and entirely reconfigurable. CNC cut panels and their variable connection components are made from 24mm thick FSC birch plywood. The graphics are printed directly onto the plywood while the majority of panels include unique cut-outs.

The project was selected through an invited competition organised by the Greater London Authority.

Data

  • Begun: Jul 2012
  • Completed: Jul 2012
  • Floor area: 135m2
  • Sector: Arts and culture
  • Total cost: £120,000
  • Procurement: Bespoke
  • Address: Parliament Square, London, SW1P 3BD, United Kingdom

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