Sackler Crossing

Architect: John Pawson
2006 Kew . London

In 2004 the decision was taken to commission what is the latest in a series of architectural interventions at Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew – a bridge across the lake.
Following Capability Brown’s preference for the ‘sinuous Line of Grace’, the bridge plots a serpentine path across the water. The deck is set the minimum possible distance from the lake’s surface, allowing those crossing to feel that they are literally taking a walk across the water. This sense of proximity is enhanced by glimpsed views of the lake between the deck treads and by the near invisibility of the supporting structures which lends the bridge a quality of sculptural abstraction. Clear visual connections link the manmade landscape of the bridge with the repeating natural forms of its setting - the gently rounded contours of the land, the smooth expanse of water and the powerful verticals of the trees.

by John Pawson

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