The winning entry to build China’s Pavilion at the Milan Expo 2015 is a stunning reinterpretation of a public space. Designed in collaboration between Tsinghua University and New York-based Studio Link-Arc, the duo rejected the notion of a typical pavilion, and instead came up with a structure that resembles billowing fields of wheat. It’s a thoughtful and creative twist on the Expo’s theme, “Feeding the Planet – Energy for Life.” According to the architects, the 5,000-square-meter space entitledLand of Hope is centered around the idea that, “hope can be realized when nature and the city exist in harmony.”
The Pavilion’s floating roof plays a large role in capturing the spirit of the Expo. Conceptually, the undulating form merges the city skyline to the building’s north with the natural landscape to the south. It’s designed as a timber structure that references the raised-beam system found in traditional Chinese architecture, and is clad in bamboo shingled panels to reference the country’s terracotta roof construction.
Inside, there will be exhibitions and cultural offerings from the 40 Chinese provinces. The centerpiece of it all is the “field of hope,” a multimedia installation that’s a landscape of LED “stalks” meant to mimic the form of wheat. After visitors have taken in the Pavilion’s sights, sounds, and short films, they can stand on a raised platform outside and enjoy the expansive views of the Expo’s grounds.
In his ‘Architecture of Density’ photo series, German photographer Michael Wolf explores the jaw-dropping urban landscapes of Hong Kong. He rids his pictures of any context, such above or the earth below, and rarely includes people, either. The images are large scale flat captions of buildings which appear to be infinite and haunting in Michael’s photos.
First prize winner in the World Press Photo competition in 2005 and 2010, Michael moved from Germany to Hong Kong back in 1994 and spent 8 years working for Stern Magazine as a contracted photographer. As he started working on his own projects since 2001, many of them proved to be successful enough to be released as books. His Architecture of Density, also available for purchase, is one out of 13 to date.
Michael’s main focus has always been life in mega cities, capturing the urban beauty of the “architecture and the vernacular culture of metropolises,” as explained in his statement. The distinctive feature of Michael’s work is said to be his ability to “find the symbolic value in those seemingly insignificant details that so often go unnoticed”.
Be sure to visit Michael’s website for more!