Photoblog: Expo Milano 2015

The most recent universal expo happened in 2015, in Milan.  The theme was food: “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life,” with 145 countries participating with their own pavilions.

Not all the pavilions were successful, attempts to be didactic on the overall theme did not always combine well with encouragement of tourism.

I paid a visit at the end July, and here’s what I saw …  First up, I present my top four pavilions:

The Top Four – The Czech Pavilion

Whimsy, and creativity and a pavilion containing multiple fun experiences (the pool was very much appreciated during the sweltering Summer days) made the Czech Pavilion a standout for me.

View from the roof onto the NAFIGATE installation - part bird, part car, part aeroplane?! - by Lukáš Rittstein, at the Czech pavilion by Chybik+Kristof Associated Architects.

View from the roof onto the NAFIGATE installation – part bird, part car, part aeroplane?! – by Lukáš Rittstein, at the Czech pavilion by Chybik+Kristof Associated Architects.

Sculpture by Lukáš Rittstein, representing the work of BIOVETA, at the Czech pavilion by Chybik+Kristof Associated Architects.

Extruded sculpture by Lukáš Rittstein, representing the work of BIOVETA, at the Czech pavilion by Chybik+Kristof Associated Architects.

Infinite garden on the roof of the Czech pavilion by Chybik+Kristof Associated Architects.

Infinite garden on the roof of the Czech pavilion by Chybik+Kristof Associated Architects.

Another view of the NAFIGATE installation - part bird, part car, part aeroplane?! - by Lukáš Rittstein, at the Czech pavilion by Chybik+Kristof Associated Architects.

Another view of the NAFIGATE installation – part bird, part car, part aeroplane?! – by Lukáš Rittstein, at the Czech pavilion by Chybik+Kristof Associated Architects.

The Top Four – The Brazil Pavilion

There was a huge queue for the Brazilian pavilion all the time – and deservedly so: the entrance was a spectacular experience, conceived of as a walkway formed by huge net, suspended over a simulated, cultivated rainforest.  Bouncing along, the visitor climbed up to the end of the open area, to the entrance proper to the pavilion.  A spectacular experience … but it was a shame that the experience inside the pavilion itself was weak.

Everyone's favourite: the Brazil pavilion by Studio Arthur Casas + Atelier Marko Brajovic.

Everyone’s favourite: the Brazil pavilion by Studio Arthur Casas + Atelier Marko Brajovic.

Everyone's favourite: the Brazil pavilion by Studio Arthur Casas + Atelier Marko Brajovic.

Everyone’s favourite: the Brazil pavilion by Studio Arthur Casas + Atelier Marko Brajovic.

Everyone's favourite: the Brazil pavilion by Studio Arthur Casas + Atelier Marko Brajovic.

Everyone’s favourite: the Brazil pavilion by Studio Arthur Casas + Atelier Marko Brajovic.

Everyone's favourite: the Brazil pavilion by Studio Arthur Casas + Atelier Marko Brajovic.

Everyone’s favourite: the Brazil pavilion by Studio Arthur Casas + Atelier Marko Brajovic.

The Top Four – The Vanke Pavilion

The blogosphere particularly loved Daniel Libeskind’s Vanke Pavilion – I had seen many pictures of it weeks before my visit.  And what a stunning building!  Coiled like a serpent; plated with glossy iridescent scarlet tiling; sitting, and yet moving; the building offered a changing and undulating silhouette from every angle.

And now to the blogosphere's favourite: Daniel Libeskind's Vanke pavilion.

The blogosphere’s favourite: Daniel Libeskind’s Vanke pavilion.

And now to the blogosphere's favourite: Daniel Libeskind's Vanke pavilion.

The blogosphere’s favourite: Daniel Libeskind’s Vanke pavilion.

And now to the blogosphere's favourite: Daniel Libeskind's Vanke pavilion.

The blogosphere’s favourite: Daniel Libeskind’s Vanke pavilion.

The Top Four – The Austria Pavilion (“Breathe”)

The absolute BEST of the Expo – of the pavilions I managed to visit – was the Austria pavilion’s enchanting forest-scape by Terrain: Landscape Ubanism (Klaus K. Loenhart). For my money, a perfect union of great concept, spot-on execution and joyful experience; alongside service to the overall Expo theme, as well as encouraging people to visit the country.

The absolute BEST of the Expo - of the pavilions I managed to visit - was the Austria pavilion's enchanting forest by Terrain: Landscape Ubanism (Klaus K. Loenhart). For my money, a perfect union of great concept, spot-on execution and joyful experience, alongside service to the overall Expo theme as well as encouraging people to visit the country.

The absolute BEST of the Expo: the Austria pavilion’s enchanting forest-scape.

The absolute BEST of the Expo - of the pavilions I managed to visit - was the Austria pavilion's enchanting forest by Terrain: Landscape Ubanism (Klaus K. Loenhart). For my money, a perfect union of great concept, spot-on execution and joyful experience, alongside service to the overall Expo theme as well as encouraging people to visit the country.

The absolute BEST of the Expo: the Austria pavilion’s enchanting forest-scape.  Words form in the air as you change your perspective along the forest paths.

The absolute BEST of the Expo - of the pavilions I managed to visit - was the Austria pavilion's enchanting forest by Terrain: Landscape Ubanism (Klaus K. Loenhart). For my money, a perfect union of great concept, spot-on execution and joyful experience, alongside service to the overall Expo theme as well as encouraging people to visit the country.

The absolute BEST of the Expo: the Austria pavilion’s enchanting forest-scape.  Interactive animations are both playful and instructive.

The absolute BEST of the Expo - of the pavilions I managed to visit - was the Austria pavilion's enchanting forest by Terrain: Landscape Ubanism (Klaus K. Loenhart). For my money, a perfect union of great concept, spot-on execution and joyful experience, alongside service to the overall Expo theme as well as encouraging people to visit the country.

The absolute BEST of the Expo: the Austria pavilion’s enchanting forest-scape.

The absolute BEST of the Expo - of the pavilions I managed to visit - was the Austria pavilion's enchanting forest by Terrain: Landscape Ubanism (Klaus K. Loenhart). For my money, a perfect union of great concept, spot-on execution and joyful experience, alongside service to the overall Expo theme as well as encouraging people to visit the country.

The absolute BEST of the Expo: the Austria pavilion’s enchanting forest-scape.

The absolute BEST of the Expo - of the pavilions I managed to visit - was the Austria pavilion's enchanting forest by Terrain: Landscape Ubanism (Klaus K. Loenhart). For my money, a perfect union of great concept, spot-on execution and joyful experience, alongside service to the overall Expo theme as well as encouraging people to visit the country.

The absolute BEST of the Expo: the Austria pavilion’s enchanting forest-scape.

The Best of the Rest

At the British pavilion, by Wolfgang Buttress / Tristan Simmonds / BDP.

The British pavilion, by Wolfgang Buttress / Tristan Simmonds / BDP.

Spanish pavilion by b720 Fermín Vázquez Arquitectos.

Spanish pavilion by b720 Fermín Vázquez Arquitectos.

Colour at Expo 2015 Milano.

Colour at Expo 2015 Milano.

Colours at the Kingdom of Bahrain pavilion by Studio Anne Holtrop in collaboration with landscape architect Anouk Vogel.

Colours at the Kingdom of Bahrain pavilion by Studio Anne Holtrop in collaboration with landscape architect Anouk Vogel.

Dante Ferretti's Arcimboldo-esque "The Food People."

Dante Ferretti’s Arcimboldo-esque “The Food People.”

Installation piece at the Mexico pavilion.

Installation piece at the Mexico pavilion.

Bright red at the Angola pavilion by António Gameiro and Paula Nascimiento.

Bright red at the Angola pavilion by António Gameiro and Paula Nascimiento.

Flower-laden rickshaw at the Malaysian pavilion.

Flower-laden rickshaw at the Malaysian pavilion.

Lots and lots and LOTS of Living Walls at Expo 2015 Milano, incl. at the Israel pavilion, by David Knafo.

Lots and lots and LOTS of Living Walls at Expo 2015 Milano, incl. at the Israel pavilion, by David Knafo.

Tickers to oblivion? Portentous infographics at Pavilion Zero.

Tickers to oblivion? Portentous infographics at Pavilion Zero.

Sunset by the Italy pavilion, by Nemesi & Partners.

Sunset by the Italy pavilion, by Nemesi & Partners.

The France pavilion, by Studio X-TU.

The France pavilion, by Studio X-TU.

Performing Beijing Opera outside the China pavilion ...

Performing Beijing Opera outside the China pavilion …

The Nepal pavilion, by Implementing Expert Group ...

The Nepal pavilion, by Implementing Expert Group …

The Turkey pavilion, by URAStudio ...

The Turkey pavilion, by URAStudio …

The Netherlands pavilion ...

The Netherlands pavilion …

Infographics a-go-go, at the Chilean pavilion by Cristián Underraga.

Infographics a-go-go, at the Chilean pavilion by Cristián Underraga.

The Korea pavilion ...

The Korea pavilion …

The Korea pavilion ...

The Korea pavilion …

The "Tree of Life."

The “Tree of Life.”

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