This spiky, orange-glowing cube, known as the Barnards Farm Sitooterie, is the newest sculptural and architectural addition to the grounds of the UK’s National Malus Collection in Essex. Adapted from Scottish origins, a “sitooterie” is a small summer cabin, as in a place to “sit oot.” The perfectly cubic, completely aluminum structure is just under 8 feet in each dimension, with its 5000 hollow pins radiating outward from slightly inside the interior. The ends of the tubes are capped with a translucent orange plastic, casting a sunlit array of bright squares into the cabin during the day, and beaming thousands of orange pinpricks when lit form within at night.
While not very strong individually, the building’s many aluminium staves lend it solid structural integrity through their great quantity evenly distributing the weight, as with a bed of nails. Designed by architect Thomas Heatherwick, the unit’s precise engineering required the assistance of an aerospace company, computer-calibrated boring machines, and over two months of on-site assembly. The finished product is a radiant feat of exacting physics and masterful design.