INTERVIEWS, REVIEWS & RELATED ARTICLES
Community Of Leisure Architects & Designers MARCH 31, 2017 - by Kim Megson
ASIF KHAN'S UK PAVILION FOR ASTANA EXPO IS A 'TIMELINE OF ENERGY' SOUNDTRACKED BY BRIAN ENO
British architect Asif Khan has revealed the first visualisations of We Are Energy - the UK pavilion he is designing for the 2017 International Exposition in Astana, Kazakhstan.
The images reveal a domed tent-like space, surrounded on the outside by a three-hundred-and-sixty degree display screen. The 2,200 square-metre (23,600 square-feet) pavilion, which is scheduled to be pre-built to shell and core by the Expo organisers, will be illuminated by electric blue lighting.
The musician Brian Eno will compose a continuous sound work for the pavilion to narrate "the timeline of energy," and Catherine Heymans, a professor of astrophysics from the University of Edinburgh has developed the accompanying scientific context.
Speaking about the inspiration for his design, Khan said: "The universe was formed 13.8 billion years ago. At that moment all energy and matter was in the same place at the same time. The idea that everything, including life on earth, is comprised of this archaic energy is fascinating to me.
"I wanted to find a way to express this relationship to our visitors and explore how energy is being continually harnessed and balanced around us."
The pavilion will be on display from June 10 to September 10.
The concept of the Expo is 'Future Energy', with participating architects challenged to suggest qualitative changes in the energy sector, primarily for the development of alternative sources of energy and transportation.
Implementation of the Astana Expo City 2017, designed by Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture, is nearing completion.
New buildings in Astana created for the festival will integrate high-performance glazing; energy piles that will reduce energy demand and provide temperature modulation during winter; emergency energy storage; and rainwater harvesting. Around ninety per cent of waste generated on site will be diverted from landfill.
Previous pavilions designed by Khan include a Serpentine Summer House, which was located alongside Bjarke Ingels' 2016 Serpentine Pavilion, and a trio of tiny forests built on the streets of London for the capital's design festival last year.
On a somewhat bigger scale, he is currently developing a design for the new Museum of London building at Smithfield with Stanton Williams.