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Asif Khan’s UK pavilion for Expo 2017 features a 60m panorama

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Rising star Asif Khan has completed his UK pavilion for the Expo 2017 in Astana, Kazakhstan

The pavilion – which features music by Brian Eno – showcases UK energy businesses, in line with the expo’s theme of ‘Future Energy’.

Occupying a 1,100m² space, which was pre-built to shell and core by the Expo organisers, the pavilion includes a 60-metre panorama depicting a ’living, universal landscape’. The images have been entirely generated by computer and the panorama is 40,000 pixels wide. 

The panorama surrounds a centrepiece structure inspired by the architecture of yurts. Its transparent spokes respond to human touch with illumination, which in turn influences the landscape around it, altering its weather in reaction to visitor activity.

The pavilion explores the origins and future of energy. Khan said: ‘Our Pavilion title is We Are Energy. It comes from the idea that everything we see around us, including ourselves, originated from a single place and moment in time, 13.8 billion years ago.

’Everything is connected – I think this understanding could change the way we think about ourselves and the world around us.’ 

The pavilion showcases a history of technological breakthroughs made in the UK, from the steam engine, through to the internet and the recently discovered material graphene.

Asif Khan – working with KBW Designs and WOO – defeated an unnamed shortlist of rival firms last summer to land the prestigious Department for International Trade-backed project (see AJ 26.07.16).

Astana is one of the smaller, specialised expositions which traditionally take place two years after the larger universal world fairs such as those at Shanghai in 2010 and Milan in 2015 (see AJ 27.04.15). Opened on Saturday, the Expo will run until 10 September. 

AHR won planning for the £370 million first phase of the 2017 Expo Village project in Astana in 2014.

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Readers' comments (1)

  • Looking forward to seeing this next week. The un-named shortlist was a collaboration between Atomik Architecture, Aecom and KWA

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