Culture /

Summer Evening Agenda: Architecture and Performance at COS x Serpentine Park Nights

Park Nights have started many an ongoing conversation with an artist

This post may contain affiliate links. Learn more


Serpentine Galleries and COS are diving into their annual Serpentine Park Nights 2018, the Serpentine’s series of experimental, interdisciplinary commissions in the Serpentine Pavilion, designed this year by award-winning architect Frida Escobedo.

Warm summer nights in Hyde Park just got hotter with the creative sparks from eight international artists who will respond to Escobedo’s atmospheric design, which draws on Mexican and British elements to create a reflective, intimate space for live encounters.

Summer Evening Agenda: Architecture and Performance at Serpentine Park Nights

COS x Serpentine Galleries Park Nights 2018, Meriem Bannani, photo by Hugo Glendinning

COS x Serpentine Galleries Park Nights 2018, Meriem Bannani, photo by Hugo Glendinning

The Serpentine Park Nights 2018 programme began this July with the feminist artist Dorothy Iannone (13 July), celebrated for her vibrant, often autobiographical paintings, drawings, prints, films, objects and books, which she has been making since the early 1960s. Meriem Bennani (20 July) has developed a shape-shifting practice of films, installations and immersive environments, mixing global and Moroccan pop culture references. Victoria Sin’s (27 July) practice incorporates performance, moving image, writing and print to interrupt normative processes of desire, identification and objectification using elements of drag, science fiction and fantasy narratives.

In August, the Serpentine welcomes the multi-instrumentalist, composer and producer Kamasi Washington (3 August), whose debut album, The Epic, won the inaugural American Music Prize. Founding its genderless line in 2005, the black-owned fashion project TELFAR (10 August) has forged lines of communication and commerce outside the existing fashion system through events, images, products, performances and collaborations emphasising a politics of presence and power beyond ‘inclusivity’.

COS x Serpentine Galleries Park Nights 2018, Dorothy Iannone, photo by Lewis Ronald 2

COS x Serpentine Galleries Park Nights 2018, Dorothy Iannone, photo by Lewis Ronald 2

Park Nights continues into September with Yaeji (7 September), who invites her listeners into an intimate, self-reflective world with dreamlike house productions that morph from whispery confessionals to dancefloor burners, featuring song-writing and hazy raps that move between Korean and English. Megan Rooney (14 September) is an enigmatic storyteller whose work expands across painting, performance, sculpture and installation, written and the spoken word, summoning characters that expand and contract across ephemeral incarnations. Pedro Reyes (21 September) studied architecture but considers himself a sculptor. Integrating elements of theatre, psychology and activism, his work encourages individual and collective agency in social, environmental or educational situations.

‘Park Nights pioneered the concept of live performance in living architecture and has become a celebrated space to experience the most compelling emerging and acclaimed artistic talent. Like everything we do at the Serpentine Galleries, Park Nights are interdisciplinary to their core and we are thrilled that COS is supporting the programme for a sixth year, enabling us to commission this series of electrifying encounters in Frida Escobedo’s ethereal Pavilion.’ – Hans Ulrich Obrist, Artistic Director of Serpentine Galleries, and Yana Peel, CEO, Serpentine Galleries

When & Where: 13 July – 21 September 2018, Serpentine Pavilion, Kensington Gardens. Visit

Tickets: £5/£4 (concessions). Booking essential via Serpentine Galleries (020 7402 6075) or

What’s On in London This Week? The Town Culture Diary