Emulsion were delighted to be asked by Leo Lourdes from Yogasphere to co-curate a temporary area at The Shard for the building’s Wellness Week: an annual initiative celebrating wellness in the workplace for their occupiers.
The project enabled us to work closely with garden specialists, The Japanese Garden Centre on this cross-disciplinary collaboration, to create a space of tranquility and contemplation in the reception area, our urban and architectural take on the traditional Zen garden.
Responding to the angular geometry of the Shard and taking inspiration from the work of sculptor-landscape architect Isamu Noguchi, we used the wholeness of the circle as a motif for our garden, which was populated with carefully placed elements. These included a 3 metre high Asa tree, set against the backdrop of a Patrick Caulfield artwork which permanently hangs in the space, and natural “scholar stones” – organic forms carved by the action of waves after being immersed for many years in the waters of Lake Taihu in the Yangtze Delta.
The resulting installation was a place not only for seminars, meditation and yoga sessions, but also a retreat in which to pause and appreciate, to reconnect with the self and the space, within the working environment of the Shard.
Photography by Jodi Redhouse.