After designing the Spanish pavilion for the Shangai Expo 2010, Miralles Tagliabue EMBT designs a dome for COPAGRI as part of the non-official participants / civil society pavilions for the Expo 2015 Milano.
Copagri is a confederation of agricultural producers organizing and representing hundrends of Italian farmers. During the 6 months of the Expo, they will showcase their approach to the use of natural food products linked to Italian traditions.
The structure is made up of two prefabricated geodesic domes, equal in diameter but different in height, with folded triangles erected as a three-dimensional grid. Both domes are wrapped with an internal suspended PVC sheet for water resistance and covered with a zig-zag pattern net fabric ensuring ventilation.
The pavilion will host weekly rotating displays of natural products narrated by the farmers and the dome is equipped with a multipurpose room for cooking demontrations, a multi-sensorial exhibit and two zones dedicated to biological pizza and icecream tasting.
Text from the architects about the design approach ‘Conceptual Memory’:
“The design started from the observation of Italian landscapes, both natural and man-shaped. During this initial design phase, we had the following thoughts:
The splendor of the Italian cities, which are beautifully represented by their domes.
The “landscape” of Rome, Florence, Turin, Venice and Milan is identified with the skyline of their domes, which in different ages always represented the exceptional architectural spaces in Italy. The Pantheon of ancient Rome, Brunelleschi in Florence, Bramante, Bernini, Borromini, Mengoni, Nervi: the Italian domes could tell the story of Italian civilization, and its artistic wonders.
In our project the domes are not only representing the magnificence of the Italian past, but they also show us potential for the future lying in the construction of domes. Continuing the path illustrated by the engineer and inventor Buckminster Fuller, we propose and experiment domes as sustainable structures that, besides being beautiful, use a minimum of materials so that they can be optimized and designed for production in series with a consequent great ease of construction. The dome, made of wood, represents a message of sustainability and will host several exhibitions, accompanying the visitors in the topics proposed by Expo Milano 2015.
At the end of the Expo, when all the buildings will be removed, these domes can be easily dismantled, transported and reassembled in symbolic Italian places to host a variety of functions. Therefore, they will make this part of the Expo even more sustainable, witnessing for a long time to come the universal message of Expo Milano 2015 ‘Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life’.”
Benedetta Tagliabue also designed the seating project ‘Minamora’ for the Expo in collaboration with the italcementi group. The benches are positioned in the green park next to the Italian Pavilion and their design was inspired by the Japanese word ‘minamo’
which means water surface.
Cover photo credits: Copagri Pavilion, Expo 2015 Milano, Miralles Tagliabue EMBT © Pygmalion Karatzas