AUSTRIAN PAVILION EXPO MILANO | Year: 2013 | Type: 2-stage Open Competition | Award: 4th prize | Collaboration: Mario Gasser
Structural Engineer: Bollinger Grohmann Schneider ZT GmbH | Landscape Design: Roland Barthofer | Model: Harald Schmidt | Visualizations: Damjan Minovski
Curatorial Consultant: Edek Bartz
The requested topic to elaborate and speculate on for the Milan Expo 2015 themed: “We feed the World – Energy for Life” is looking into our future of nutrition and asks the question “Is it possible to ensure sufficient, good, healthy and sustainable food for all mankind?”
Our proposal for the competition for the Austrian expo pavilion for Milano 2015 is driven by a conceptual approach of highlighting the local cultural and craft diversity within Austrian regions, and how these expertise in conjunction with Austria’s diverse topography and nature have produced a broad variety within the cultivation of agricultural crops and goods. We understand the architectural proposal to this proposition as an ark, carrying a library of diverse Austrian goods, locally produced with a sustainable philosophy.
The pavilion is organized as a 2 story building receiving its morphology from simply undulating and folding surfaces of the main envelope. Conceptually we see the building as a development- a part of the ground, relating to the archaic and agricultural nature of the hosted content. Enclosure, walls, structure are all contained within a continuous and holistic body. The massing is articulated as a pair of elongated volumes, opening up in the front with a view towards the main arena of the expo site. The entry is clearly composed of 2 separated entities with a gesture of inviting visitors, and accommodating a plaza in front of the building. As one enters the building the two volumes merge and develop an internalized fold within the building establishing routes of circulation and the secondary floor hosting the main exhibition. The ground floor with amenities and a local restaurant is designed as a permeable and open space. In contrast the concealed exhibition space on the first floor, a black box with tiny slot opening is introverted in its nature, and focuses on a didactic curation of Austrian craftsmanship and products.