World Expo 2010, Shanghai

The World Expo 2010 opened in Shanghai yesterday. Among others, any World Expo will, without fail, entice designers (mostly our profession) to look at what are the essence of a country, the technology, the vision, the people, the architecture. 

It has gone from the visionary Barcelona Pavilion (Mies Van der Rohe) into the outstanding World Expo 2000 in Hanover, notably an entry of the Dutch Pavilion by MVRDV. OK, I'll cut this short and go directly to the Shanghai Expo - the good and the bad pavilions, because, these little 'baskets' is a glimpse into one's nation.

There are lots of bad ones, but I am keen to bash our own (although, please note that designs are subjective, and merely personal. However, there is such thing as good design sense...).

Malaysian Pavilion - firstly, they did not do an architectural competition to get a good design. Secondly, it's a batik roof, and what on earth is that chimney doing there?, and lastly, why a vernacular architecture? 
Not only it's many steps backwards (OK, it is noble to show our roots, albeit too noble?) And, in the forum, Malaysian are getting bashed again by the super-sensitive group, over the fact that the Minangkabau house is in fact Indonesian, NOT Malaysian... I won't go there, tapi ibarat kata Nabil, "lu pikir lah sendiri..." Today, my friends, is not a good day for us, for I have flushed my face down the toilet...

the initial design
the final interpretation (gambar so blur, lah)

Hi Malaysian,

Dengan sukacitanya saya ingin memaklumkan kepada kerajaan malaysia setingi tiggi terima kasih kerana mempromosikan rumah MINANGKABAU (asal dari Indonesia)… Read More
di World Expo China 2010 di tapak kepunyaan Malaysia.

Dengan itu saya turut berterima kasih kepada Dr Ng Yen Yen kerana mempromosikan budaya Indonesia(MINANGKABAU) di negara China .
Oleh yang demikian, Indonesia tidak akan membelanja dalam World Expo ini kerana Malaysia dengan sebesar hatinya menderma 19 juta untuk mempromosikan Indonesia pavilion.
Bah kata ….ini semua memanfaatkan seluruh asia
…design dari china, pelarasan dari Taiwan,dibina oleh China,dibayar oleh Malaysia dan manfaat kepada Indonesia.SYABAS MALAYSIA!

Sekian terima kasih,

….a comment found from the link below “”

Good ones (no. 1)...

Danish Pavilion, by the uber cool B.I.G Architect, it's a double spiral continuous structure that places all exhibition halls etc, and the perforation wall of the skyline of beautiful Copenhagen...

Cool factor no.1 - the ramp is ride-able and pedestrian friendly, where you could ride with your bike up and down again, with a spectacular view of Shanghai. If you haven't known, bicycles are the cool thing in Copenhagen... the pavilion is painted white - to represent the country's remarkable sailing traditions, and to keep the building cool.
Cool factor no.2 - they brought The Little Mermaid from the original site of the cruise ship pier at Langelinie, Copenhagen... woooooooo.....

Good ones (no. 2)...

U.K. Pavilion - which uses thousands of electrodes to become the fuzzy tele-box... It's just wierd and cutting-edge... WOW, indeed!

the skaters' heaven, ain't it?

Others, equally interesting and quirky are;

 the Singapore Pavilion - the Music Box
the Polska - they must be mourning in this Pavilion, tho... 
undoubtedly Thailand - why so predictable? 
 the Spanish Pavilion - looks like the scale of a rattlesnake
the Macau's rabbit. Hugh Hefner is in the house...


ziff71 said…
Think we always shoot ourselves in the foot. Buat dulu baru pikir. Tu Nabil suruh pikir sendiri. :)
Yimster said…
Aiyah I thought you went there syah and seen the expo with your own eyes :). That would be a blast kan
Anonymous said…
加油!充實內函最重要!Beauty is but skin- deep. ....................................................
If I have money/time, this will be one of the event I will go. Add the pictures of the pavillions lah Syah. Coke has their own pavillion too. I like what Singapore did, very modern but as usual, no soul. Malaysia one is OK I guess, from a layman point of view but what do I know abt architecture? But in all design, I think something that is clever and has the wow element will capture our imagination.

Bila nak pegi ni?
Mr Lonely said…
nice blog.. have a view of my blog when free.. .. do leave me some comment / guide if can.. if interested can follow my blog...
amsyah said…
ziff - tu lah... ni pengajaran buat semua... ni yang buat susah nak ke jakarta ke etc haahahha

Yim - I wanted too, tapi nnt lah. but that would a killer blast (pompompom)

裕以 - true - it has to be supported with lots of substance

kash - it would be an interesting event to go. the Malaysian Pavilion is short of imagination and creative innovation. We all understand the traditional sentiments, but it could be translated into so many other ways. Sad to say, Malaysia is not forward thinking (in this sense of the Pavilion).

And coming from sensitivity point of view, why one traditional house should represent our nation, where we have rumah Terengganu (Shuk mesti suka), Kelantan, Limas, rumah Perak, Melaka etc etc etc etc? Purely political? Sheesh, this topic is not a good one to be discussing early in the morning hahaha

Bila nak pegi (lambung balik)

Mr Lonely - thanks for dropping by.

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