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EXPO 2015 Milano – A Guide to the Pavilions, Part 3

June 01, 2015 /

01_DSC8473.jpgExpo Gates sculptures at Piazza Italia

By Pygmalion Karatzas

This is the 3rd and final installment of our coverage of the EXPO 2015 in Milan. We have once again featured the most outstanding pavilions of this six-month global showcase of over 140 participating countries and is estimated to attract 20 million visitors.

The EXPO 2015 site is located near the RHO PERO area, 9 km north-west of the city centre. An investment of more than 4 billion Euros is the estimated cost of the project, however the total cost is expected to be around 13 billion. Some 40,000 people have been involved in the planning and execution of the event, not counting the participation of 36,000 volunteers.

02_map2.jpgPlan of Expo color-coded in thematic groups. Source: www.expo2015.org

03_pavilions graphic.jpgGraphic of the pavilions. Source:  www.expo2015.org

The masterplan and design guidelines mandated that the exposition site blend in with the environment coherently and naturally, as well as reducing the impact of construction and energy consumption. It is the first large-scale event to fully compensate for 100% of the greenhouse gases emitted. This will be achieved through local projects that improve energy efficiency and the purchase of carbon credits from international projects. The site also presents some of the most advanced technologies in the energy field, with a higly innovative LED public lighting system and a smart energy network receiving power fuelled by renewable sources.

04_DSC2486.jpgChildren's Park

05_decumano.jpgDecumano (main thoroghfare) from west entrance (Triulza)

06_DSC0248.jpgService buildings by Onsite studio and Liverani-Molteni architects

07_DSC8013.jpgCzech exhibition

08_DSC7797.jpgKuwait exhibition

09_DSC2196.jpgEduador facade detail

10_DSC1451.jpgRice cluster facade detail

11_DSC1122.jpgSlovakia food tasting

12_DSC2592.jpgHaving a break at the Morocco canal

In addition to the individual country pavilions, EXPO Milan introduced thematic clusters to house projects from countries that were unable to create their own pavilion. These clusters are communal exhibition spaces that are scattered around the site and enable the participants to represent their history and culture through the agricultural and food traditions most typical of their country. Some clusters present timeless products -rice, coffee, spices, cocoa and fruits. Other clusters are grouped according to territory themes - biomediterranean, islands and sea, and arid zones. The thematic clusters are the result of an international workshop comprised of 18 universities from around the world. 

13_cluster design.pngGraphic of Clusters' design teams. Source: www.expo2015.org

The Expo Milan also has uniquely designed exhibition areas that explore and interpret the themes of the expo such as Biodiversity Park, Slow Food Pavilion, Art and Food, and the Future Food District. It also includes participants from civil society organizations and firms developing projects of interest in connection to the theme of the Expo.

The three features present a selection of the national pavilions, the thematic clusters and areas, and of the non-official participants, corporate and partner pavilions. The visit took place between the 5th and 14th of May. 

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Self-built national pavilions
    

14_austria.jpgAustria 'Breathe' by Klaus Loenhart & Team Breathe Austria

15_DSC9647.jpgAustria 'Breathe' by Klaus Loenhart & Team Breathe Austria

16_DSC0098.jpgSpain 'The language of taste' by B720 Arquitectos

17_DSC0113.jpgSpain 'The language of taste' by B720 Arquitectos

18_DSC0850.jpgSlovenia 'I feel SLOVEnia, Green, Active, Healthy' by SoNo arhitekti

19_DSC7882.jpgSlovenia 'I feel SLOVEnia, Green, Active, Healthy' by SoNo arhitekti

20_DSC8099.jpgBahrain 'Archaeologies of Green' by Anne Holtrop and Anouk Vogel

21_DSC8050.jpgBahrain 'Archaeologies of Green' by Anne Holtrop and Anouk Vogel

22_DSC8488.jpgKuwait 'The challenge of nature' by Sutdio Italo Rota

23_DSC7813.jpgKuwait 'The challenge of nature' by Sutdio Italo Rota

24_DSC9692.jpgSwitzerland 'Confooderatio Helvetica' by Netwerch GmBH

25_DSC8820.jpgSwitzerland 'Confooderatio Helvetica' by Netwerch GmBH

26_DSC9960.jpgLithuania 'A fusion of traditions and innovations for a balanced future' by UAB "JAS"

27_DSC8416.jpgLithuania 'A fusion of traditions and innovations for a balanced future' by UAB "JAS"

28_DSC7947.jpgIsrael 'Fields of tomorrow' by Knafo Klimor Architects

29_DSC9239.jpgIsrael 'Fields of tomorrow' by Knafo Klimor Architects

30_DSC0382.jpgMorocco 'A journey of Flavours' by KILO Architectur

31_DSC8893.jpgMorocco 'A journey of Flavours' by KILO Architectur

32_DSC9030.jpgIreland 'Origin Green Ireland: Working with nature' by Office of Public Works Ireland

33_DSC7988.jpgIreland 'Origin Green Ireland: Working with nature' by Office of Public Works Ireland

34_DSC7265.jpgHoly See 'Not by bread alone. At the Lord's Table with all Mankind' by Quattroassociati

35_DSC6718.jpgHoly See 'Not by bread alone. At the Lord's Table with all Mankind' by Quattroassociati

36_DSC8505.jpgMonaco 'Excellence and solidarity - a new look at feeding the planet' by Enrico Pollini

37_DSC0451.jpgMonaco 'Excellence and solidarity - a new look at feeding the planet' by Enrico Pollini

38_DSC9983.jpgArgentina 'Argentina feeds you' by National Government

39_DSC9982.jpgArgentina 'Argentina feeds you' by National Government

40_DSC7275.jpgUruguay 'Life grows in Uruguay' by architects from the National Meat Institute (INAC)

41_DSC8426.jpgUruguay 'Life grows in Uruguay' by architects from the National Meat Institute (INAC)

42_DSC9896.jpgSudan 'Land of agricultural opportunities and food security'

43_DSC7069.jpgSudan 'Land of agricultural opportunities and food security'

44_DSC7063.jpgNepal 'Food security and sustainability for development' by Implementing Expert Group (IEG)

45_DSC8002.jpgNepal 'Food security and sustainability for development' by Implementing Expert Group (IEG)

46_DSC7232.jpgKazakhstan 'The land of opportunities' by GTP2 Architects

47_DSC9211.jpgKazakhstan 'The land of opportunities' by GTP2 Architects

48_DSC0390.jpgTurkmenistan 'Water is Life' by Tilke GmbH & Co KG

49_DSC8965.jpg Turkmenistan 'Water is Life' by Tilke GmbH & Co KG

Each pavilion holds a 'National Day' during the six months of the Expo, where each country has the opportunity to organize a series of public events and festivities, both on-site and in the city of Milan. Participating countries present their culture and creativity through institutional events and entertainment, involving other countries as well as the general public.  

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Clusters
    

50_DSC8564.jpgCluster Coffee: Burundi, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Guatermala, Kenya, Rwanda, Timor-Leste, Uganda, Yemen - covering 3,500 m2

51_DSC9540.jpgCluster Islands, Sea and Food: The Caribbean Community (Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Santa Lucia, Saint Vincent & Grenadines, Suriname), Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Guinea, Bissau, Madagascar, Maldives - covering 2,500 m2


53_DSC8856.jpgCluster Cereals & Tubers: Bolivia, Congo, Haiti, Mozambique, Togo, Venezuela, Zimbabwe - covering 3,800 m2

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Thematic Areas, Non-Official Participants / Civil Societies, Corporate, Partners
     

54_DSC0875.jpgCopagri Pavilion by Miralles Tagliabue EMBT

55_DSC0879.jpgCopagri Pavilion by Miralles Tagliabue EMBT

56_DSC2523.jpgWAA (World Association of Agronomists) / CONAF by Enzo Eusebi

57_DSC2513.jpgWAA (World Association of Agronomists) / CONAF by Enzo Eusebi

58_DSC0646.jpgIntesa Saopaolo Pavlion by Michele De Lucchi

59_DSC1976.jpgNew Holland Pavilion by Carlo Ratti Associati

60_DSC9939.jpgSave the Children Italia by Argot ou La Maison Mobile (AouMM)

61_DSC9946.jpgSave the Children Italia by Argot ou La Maison Mobile (AouMM)

62_DSC9241.jpgEuropean Union Pavilion on the North-East side of the Cardo

During the six-month expo, representatives from participating countries and organizations will be sharing ideas and solutions on sustainable agriculture through conferences and related events. The various activities are designed to make us contemplate the theme from multiple perspectives. Towards the end of the expo, various awards will be given to the official participants who have best demonstrated and contributed to the theme 'Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life'. The awards are for pavilion design, creative display and theme development.

In his essay about the history of World Fairs, 'Belief in the Future', Aldo Castellano notes "The most significant change (in the basic nature of these trade fairs) is perhaps in the spirit of competition between individual exhibitors from participating countries." In the early days of modernity, competition was considered a positive and effective way of encouraging the production of quality products. Although, in the following decades studies by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on food quality and agricultural surpluses, have demonstrated the degredation of current food production practices and the need to move beyond the competitive paradigm.

World expositions are about many things: showcasing and exchanging ideas in innovation and technology; a celebration of cultures and traditions; networking and outreaching among countries and organizations; and ultimately an opportunity to reflect upon our state of being and becoming. While the initial concepts may seemed charged with lofty goals, as time passes and their manifestation progresses, they become a microcosm for mirroring our collective realities.

63_DSC1544.jpgEXPO Centre (EXPO Headquarters and Media Centre) by Michele De Lucchi

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Facts about EXPOs

The Universal Expositions are organized by the Bureau Internacional de Exposiciones (BIE), taking place every five years over six months during which cultural, social and economic exchanges between countries, institutions, international bodies, ngo's and companies are strenghtended. They have an on-going tradition of 160 years. World EXPOs are regarded as the Olympics in the areas of economy, culture, science and technology.

Early events date back in 1851 (London) with the last EXPO in Shanghai in 2010 reaching 73 million visitors. Popular inventions presented in past EXPOs include: the photograph (1878 Paris), the ferris wheel (1893 Chicago), the X-ray machine (1901 Buffalo), electricity (1904 St. Louis), the television set (1939 New York), the mobile phone (1970 Osaka). According to the Protocol of BIE, a world exposition "is an event which, regardless of its name, has a primary purpose of public education, making an inventory of means available to people in order to meet the needs of the civilisation and highlighting current progress or future prospects within one or more areas of human activity".

Credits

All images © Pygmalion Karatzas (unless otherwise stated). For additional images from my archive of the EXPO, a section of my website will be regularly updated.

Acknowledgements

I would like to thank The Danish Architecture Centre for supporting this project, Jakob Hybel for his editorial help, Giordana Zagami from HK Strategies for providing additional information, Paola Di Marzo and Massimiliano at the Italian Pavilion press office, Roberta Riccio at the Swiss Pavilion press office, Elena Pagano at the German Pavilion press office, Fulvia Zimmitti for the hospitality, and Panos Bazos for his invaluable and continous support.

Links

Official website of EXPO 2015 Milano
Pygmalion Karatzas Photography
Video 'EXPO 2015 Milano Glipses'

Read part 1 and part 2 of the EXPO 2015 guide

Last updated: June 02, 2015

See also

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