Shanghai World Expo 2010 - New Zealand Pavilion

The NZ Pavilion is one of the most interesting pavilions I visited. The building is architecturally quite impressive - a wedge-shaped building which is covered entirely by an outdoor landscaped garden on the roof. The wedge motive is repeated on the entrance canopy, and on the elevations large timber columns cover the facade providing a screening effect which looks really attractive as well as natural. The queue was quite long, but at least it was moving. Right at the entrance there was a large wooden canoe being hand-carved by a Maori wood carver. This canoe will be presented as a gift to China after the Expo.


In a similar fashion to many of the Pavilions, visitors are taken to the upper level of the pavilion through a series of ramps. Along the way, various exhibits show snippets of live in New Zealand. Unlike many other pavilions though, at the NZ pavilion the displays are quite innovative and interesting. Some of the LCD screens show life-size figures which I thought were real people !


As you reach the roof top, you get the real payoff for the visit - a beautiful landscape which looked like it was taken right out from New Zealand to Shanghai. Created by Weta Works - the SFX genius behind the LOTR series of movies, the landscape consists of real as well as artifical plants - but you would be hard pressed to tell the difference ! There was even a hot spring in the middle sprouting steaming water into the air.


Near the exit, a giant artificial "Pohutukawa" tree stands guard. It is a magnificent tree with furry red blossoms which reminds one of Christmas.


The NZ Pavilion is definitely one of those worth a visit.

Comments

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