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Kuwaiti pavilion wins award for construction art

expo-milano-2015-site-visit-final-construction-designboom-13MILAN: The Kuwaiti pavilion at Expo Milan 2015 has won the international award for construction art; selected as one the top lucrative display corners at the international fairground, garnering more than double the votes the Italian pavilion got, which came second. The award steering body said on its website that the Kuwaiti pavilion drew admiration of the majority of voters, garnering 20.73 percent of the votes for distinguished architectural design among 54 pavilions.

The Kuwaiti stands got more than a fifth of the votes, more than double those given to the Italian corner, which took 9.67 percent. Brazil, in the weeks-long contest, got 9.35 percent of the votes, coming third, followed by Britain with 7.17 percent and then Bahrain with 4.95 percent. The award for the most impressive pavilion is due to be delivered at the final ceremony on Oct 31. It will be attended by the Italian premier and representatives of 145 participating countries.

The contest is organized by the Italian National Institute of Architecture, the national construction association, the Italian National Association of Architects and Builders, designers of projects and cities, and the Italian association of construction companies. Judges base their rulings on the success of blending distinctive architectural techniques with genuine innovative shapes and structures.

The Kuwaiti pavilion, designed by the renowned Italian architect Italo Rota, depicts the challenge of nature in Kuwait, blending heritage with manifestations of modernization. In remarks to Kuwait News Agency (KUNA), Rota expressed pride for earning the international award, noting that his past visit to Kuwait proved fruitful, enabling him to fathom the Kuwaitis’ traditions, their genuine personalities and accomplishments, namely their successful investment in human resources.

Mazen Al-Ansari, the top person in charge of the Kuwaiti corner, echoed identical sentiments of pleasure, expressing gratitude to the strategists who selected such a talented and well-known architect to build the stands and structures, showing Kuwait from attractive perspectives. The architect Rota, Ansari said, succeeded in narrating the exceptional Kuwaiti history, the bedouins’ simple life, the renaissance and the modern life, noting that the sails’ panorama at sundown has drawn many visitors.

The Kuwaiti pavilion, themed “Challenges of Nature”, is situated at a vantage location close to the German and US showplaces. The Kuwaiti location occupies a 1,423-sq-m section with a 1,100-sq-m facade. The three-storey structure is 12 meters in height. It has attracted more than 1.5 million visitors, some two weeks ahead of the fair’s closure. Number of daily visitors often exceeds 11,000, much higher than its accommodation capacity.

Kuwait has exerted great efforts to ensure its successful participation in this international public relations event. Top officials have visited the Kuwaiti corner where the structure and shapes, along with briefings by the staff, provide a clear picture about Kuwait, its history, heritage and struggle of its people in old and modern times.

Among the basic themes portrayed at the fair is the Kuwaitis’ success to build a modern state and provide all necessities for inhabitants, including water resources largely by desalinating seawaters, as the country is located along the coast in the northernmost part of the Gulf. Expo Milan 2015, themed “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life” opened on May 1. – KUNA

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