Yinka Ilori Designs Mirrored Pavilion for Self-Reflection at Haus der Kulturen der Welt 2024


British-Nigerian designer Yinka Ilori has unveiled the Reflection in Numbers pavilion, a striking installation aimed at encouraging contemplation on racism in sport ahead of the Euro 2024 football tournament. The pavilion is a key feature of Haus der Kulturen der Welt’s (HKW) programme, “Ballet of the Masses – On Football and Catharsis,” which seeks to address and highlight issues of racism, particularly in football.

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Exterior view of the Reflection in Numbers pavilion by Yinka Ilori for HKW.

The pavilion is showcased at Haus der Kulturen der Welt 2024.
“The mirrors are intended to make visitors reflect on their behaviors and interactions with others,” Ilori said. “They make it hard for people to hide, especially if they’re shouting or swearing, as often seen on sporting grounds and in stadiums.”

Ilori also spoke about the spiritual aspect of football, noting how the sport brings people and communities together to sing, chant, share praise, and wave flags.

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Interior view of Reflection in Numbers at HKW.

The mirrors encourage self-reflection within visitors.
The pavilion features a timber structure enclosed on one side by a perforated exterior composed of calabashes, a plant frequently used in West African instruments. The other half is wrapped in a yellow-painted timber structure.

“For me, the calabash symbolizes peace,” Ilori explained. “It’s often seen as a peace offering that brings communities together. I hope it encourages people to remember the importance of peace in sport and the power of reflection.”

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Seating area within Reflection in Numbers at HKW.

The structure hosts a sheltered seating area.
Inside the pavilion, visitors will find a curved, stepped seating area surrounding a central space, backed by a sea of mirrors embedded into the calabashes. A green-painted, vortex-like canopy shelters the space and is similarly decorated with calabashes.

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A sea of mirrors embedded into the calabashes.

The pavilion is open to the public from 7 June as part of HKW’s “Ballet of the Masses – On Football and Catharsis” festival. The festival, funded by the EURO 2024 Football & Culture Foundation and the German government, includes installations, performances, and workshops focused on football.

In addition to the Reflection in Numbers pavilion, Ilori recently completed a pop-up cognac bar inside Selfridges in London and two gigantic chairs installed on The Line art walk in London.

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