The UK pavilion is one of the first pavilions to open at Milan's 2015 World Expo and we are buzzing. Designed by Wolfgang Buttress, BDP, Tristan Simmonds and constructed by Stage One, the soaring 1,910 square meter pavilion simulates a real beehive. "Grown in Britain and Northern Ireland," the pavilion also expresses the role research and technology can play to address food security and biodiversity. And bees, as we all know by now, are absolutely central to this conversation. Flip through our gallery of photographs depicting the UK's interpretation of this year's expo theme "Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life" and find more details after the jump.
“The stand-out UK Pavilion is inspired by the crucial role played by pollination in providing the food that we eat,” according to the organizers. “It offers visitors a unique experiential journey taken from the perspective of the honeybee and forms the platform for a programme of UK business, science and cultural events, linked to the leading role the UK plays in overcoming global challenges.”
The pavilion follows a typical honeybee’s daily exploits through orchards, meadows and other landscapes. Their focused meandering to collect pollen and nectar to feed the colony and produce honey. This gentle experience culminates in a 14-meter cubed sculptural element that uses light and sound to mimic the busy interior of a real hive packed with hundreds of busy bees.
Comprised of 169,300 individual aluminum components and assembled in 32 dizzying horizontal zig-zagging layers, the sculpture captures the essence of a swarming hive. But the heart of the visitor experience lies in the nucleus of this hive lit up with pulsating LED lights attuned to a real bee’s hive located nearly 1,000 miles away in Nottingham. This allows the visitor to identify with these hard-working pollinators and frankly, it’s hard to not be emotional about the numerous ways in which our lifestyle has been detrimental to their survival.
Can’t get to Milan? Don’t worrry, we’ve got you covered. Inhabitat will be visiting a host of pavilions over the next week or so in order to give our readers an insider glimpse of the first world expo’s in history to seriously address crucial environmental issues.
Images via Mike Chino for Inhabitat