A contemporary interpretation of the long-lost Rose Window at the Old St Paul’s Cathedral has been announced as the winning design for the third edition of the ‘St Paul’s Plinth’ competition, organised by the LFA and Cheapside Business Alliance. Designed by Nick Tyrer and Umut Baykan, ‘Rose’ makes use of the existing frame structure outside St Paul’s tube station as a platform for a new intervention that will be seen by hundreds of thousands of people in the City when installed as part of the 2020 London Festival of Architecture.
As the LFA celebrates its theme of ‘power’ for 2020, ‘Rose’ offers a joyful and uplifting reminder for passers-by of their place in London’s shifting and powerful history, drawing upon the Old St Paul’s Cathedral – destroyed in the Great Fire of London in 1666 – and bringing one of its most beautiful elements back to life through a contemporary interpretation.
The mesmerising installation draws upon the patterning of the original rose window to create a bold geometric arrangement with a series of recycled acrylic panels coated in innovative dichroic film. Suspended above the pavement, the dichroic film reflects and refracts light across a dramatic spectrum of bright hues, bathing the visitors and passers-by beneath in a kaleidoscopic shadow of colours. Reminiscent of stained-glass, the colours change before visitor’s eyes depending on the viewing angle and time of day, creating an inspiring and shareable experience to admire and be immersed within.
The design team are now developing their design – working with fabricators, Raskl – ahead of installation in time for the London Festival of Architecture 2020. As part this, Nick and Umut are currently in the process of securing a sustainable legacy for this project, which will be revealed alongside the installation this June.