Nearly five years in the making, a 12-meter-high confectionary has emerged on the grounds of the sprawling Waddesdon Manor in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire. Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos (previously) designed an enormous “Wedding Cake” pavilion to sit near the 19th-century Dairy, which was built by Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild to entertain guests, drawing on the location’s history of charming visitors and providing an architectural focal point within the expansive parkland.
“Wedding Cake” playfully avails itself of the architectural legacy of follies, a type of building constructed primarily for decoration, with famous examples like Marie Antoinette’s hamlet at Versailles or the Dunmore Pineapple in Scotland. Vasconcelos’ design was inspired by Baroque style, Waddesdon Manor’s reputation for events and hospitality, and the symbolism and traditions of the sweet treat through time.
Commissioned by the Rothschild Foundation, the three-layered cake is clad entirely in ornate ceramic tiles, a craft tradition rooted in Vasconcelos’ home in Lisbon. Pâtisserie-worthy adornments like fish diving into shell bowls and corniced platforms complement lacy ironwork and pastel hues. Part sculpture and part building, the immersive installation invites visitors to walk up winding inner stairwells and traipse around the tiers.
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