the south london gallery (SLG) opens its doors to a new permanent garden designed by the influential mexican artist, gabriel orozco. over the span of two years, he has worked side by side with UK-based 6a architects and horticulturists from the royal botanic gardens KEW to complete the project. during the process, orozco has stepped into new territory and challenged himself by using his artistic background to regenerate an unused space. originally, the artist shows a distinct use of concentric circles in his work –which is also apparent in the design of the SLG garden. such an approach is orozco’s way of unveiling the poetic nature of the urban, mundane world. 

gabriel orozco new permanent garden SLG designboom
the york stone brick layout suggests interchangeable use and constant movement 
all images © andy stagg




gabriel orozco planned the garden with 6a architects as a combination of interchangeable, connected spaces. at first, he configured the ground by creating ‘broken’ concentric patterns that lead the user to various spots — reflecting motion and fluidity. on the other hand, circular sculptures with different levels and details were molded into the garden for multi-purpose use: sitting, eating, playing, displaying art works, and planting. when walking through the garden, the visitor can witness the vertical continuity between the paving pattern and the sculptural installations. the material used to shape the garden is local york stone laid out in bricks — evoking the victorian style of the south london gallery. finally, influenced by the concept of urban degradation, he designed the garden in a way for it to be gradually invaded by grasses and ground covers – which were chosen under the consultancy of the royal botanic gardens KEW. by doing so, the garden would assume a more natural character and highlight orozco’s particular concept of finding beauty in the ordinary.


the garden will be open for the public on weekends and invited guests during the week. 

gabriel orozco new permanent garden SLG designboom
blending the sculptural york stone levels with water – creating stillness within a dynamic design