The Serpentine Gallery is best approached across Hyde Park on a sunny day, when you can really appreciate its elegant Knightsbridge setting. Inside, the cult favourite gallery injects a shot of cool, contemporary, and modern art into the area, and is renowned for attracting a young, knowledgeable crowd. The annual Serpentine party is London’s social event of the year, inviting only the cognoscenti of the art and celebrity worlds.
The celebrated annual commission of a new Pavilion by lauded architects or designers has become an annual landmark in Hyde Park, with 2012’s designed by Herzog & de Meuron and Ai Weiwei. Adding to this is the transformation across the lake of a building into a new platform for international contemporary art under the golden touch of Zaha Hadid – the new Serpentine Sackler Gallery. Described as an innovative arts venue for the 21st century, it opens in a Grade II-listed building in Kensington Gardens and is sure to add to the wide-ranging programme of exhibitions, architecture, education and public programmes.
The Serpentine has no permanent café or restaurant. There are however, coffee carts dotted around the park, so take a pleasant stroll through the beautiful oasis to find one. A selected artist also designs a summer pavilion just outside the gallery every year, which serves coffee and cakes.
Walther Koenig Books Ltd, stocking hundreds of books on art, photography, and architecture. You can find publications on anyone from Renzo Piano and Marcel Duchamp to Michelangelo. Make sure you also find your way to the back room where you can find bucket loads of discounted books. There are also arts DVD’s, magazines, postcards, and newspapers.
+44 (0) 20 7402 6075
Monday – Sunday 10.00 – 18.00
Tube: Lancaster Gate (Central Line), South Kensington (District Line, Circle Line, Piccadilly Line), Knightsbridge (Piccadilly Line)