In what remains one of Mizzi Studio’s most luxuriant commissions – we were approached by Tom Dixon to realise and manufacture a central piece of sculpture for the Spa at the Mondrian Hotel, Sea Containers House on the South Bank, London. The result was a foray into suspended sculpture, and glorious gilding.
The sculpture, nicknamed the Tear Drop, is a floor-to-ceiling glowing copper water droplet that descends gracefully from the ceiling into a gently rippling starlit pool, casting golden shadows on to the ceiling. It’s an organic mass that creates tension between movement and balance by freezing a moment in time. The Tear Drop is 3m high by 1.8m at its widest with a 600mm diameter droplet.
The Tear Drop was fabricated in fibreglass with a copper under-spray, installed in Mondrian’s Agua Spa, and then gilded with copper leaf. Our biggest challenge was creating a seemingly continuous form while allowing for the sculpture to fit through all the standard sized doors within the hotel leading up to the installation area. Ultimately the sculpture’s size was what most lent to its transformative presence – creating a gravitational pull at the centre of the spa’s sensuous space. The design was built on the vision Tom Dixon had for a copper water feature ascending from the roof. The water feature element was lost and we created a beautiful bio-morphic and more literal translation of a water droplet.
Location: Mondrian Hotel, South Bank, London, UK
Status: Completed in 2014
Key materials: Fibreglass, copper spray, gold leaf
Key services: Design, visualisation, construction management
Collaborators: Tom Dixon/Design Research Studio