Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Texture and Architecture

The Spanish Pavilion built for the 2010 Shanghai World Exposition was made very distinctive by its texture, which was a result of the craft that went into building it. The design firm Catalan EMBT Miralles-Tagliabue used the tradition of wicker basket weaving as a link between Spain and China. What you see are handmade wicker panels attached to a metal frame that creates the structure. This results in a roughly textured surface that plays interestingly with the biomorphic form. From afar, the Pavilion appears as a rough, scaly undulating mass, but closer inspection reveals the handmade nature of the panels. In this way, Spain constructed a thoroughly modern building that also referenced its proud heritage. Past was linked with the present.

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