In front of the Expo 2020 Dubai Pavilions, the furnishings are on display: sculptural furniture and important volumes interact with the architecture in a game of proportions and imagination. With a look at sustainability

As in a divertissement we have projected the architectures of the Expo 2020 Dubai Pavilions out of their context to create conceptual connections with the furnishing elements, playing with colored backgrounds, graphic signs and transparencies. Colors, shapes, textures and materials enter into a relationship with architecture by assonance and by contrast: from the soft and rounded lines of an iconic armchair made with ground corks, to the skilful craftsmanship of papier-mâché, from the shades of the Venetian lagoon reproduced on copper, to the three-dimensional surfaces reminiscent of a Japanese canneté effect.

UAE Pavilion, designed by Santiago Calatrava

The pavilion is inspired by the traditional Bedouin tent, in homage to life in the desert and associated local sustainable solutions; its shape represents a symbolic interpretation of the flight of a hawk, the national bird of the United Arab Emirates. The building has an impressive mechanical roof, made up of 28 floating "wings", which open at various angles. The interior with organic and futuristic shapes works with solar energy and solar desalination systems, maintaining a zero-emission energy footprint. The technology uses passive strategies such as natural cross ventilation, shading and planting thanks to the garden in the basement.

Lido armchair, design GamFratesi for Minotti, inspired by the fifties, with enveloping seat with a continuous curved line that defines the padded shell with Tender textile covering in Cedar color, legs in dark brown stained canaletto walnut. Capsule, design Cédric Ragot for Roche Bobois, sideboard with 3 doors in glossy or matt lacquered mdf, legs in black lacquered steel, inside shelves in tempered glass. (photo Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Shuh and Barbara Burg)

Baia table, designed by Zanellato Bortotto for De Castelli, with an organic shape, inspired by the landscape of the Venetian lagoon: the infinite chromatic variations are found in the DeNuance lagoon finishes of the top, with multiple shades of blue and green. The base is made up of two cylindrical copper elements, which support the large top. (photo Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Shuh and Barbara Burg)

Austrian Pavilion: “Austria makes sense”, project by Querkraft Architekten

The Querkraft studio was inspired by the wind towers and climate control tools of Arab clay architecture. Reinterpreting the building traditions of the host country, 38 cones of different heights characterize the configuration of the pavilion, articulated around three green courtyards. The installation curated by Büro Wien, Ars Electronica Solutions and the design agency Bleed underlines the concept through artistic-media installations. The pavilion offers a concrete contribution to the debate on sustainability: thanks to the construction features it has been possible to largely renounce conventional air conditioning technology in the hot desert climate and reduce energy requirements by more than 70 percent. It is also made with the prefabrication technique of only eight different types of elements that will allow the dry disassembly of the individual parts and reassembly in a new place in the Arab world.

Up5_6, special edition in cork of the famous armchair with pouf from the Up series, designed by Gaetano Pesce in 1969 for B&B Italia. With a view to an approach to sustainable design, the production process starts with the recovery and recycling of used corks. The corks, collected from schools in the Italian territory, are ground and reduced into granules, then mixed exclusively with natural binders. (photo Andreas Keller)

Sillage armchair with organic shapes and generous proportions designed by Studio Mumbai for Hermès. Above a beech wood frame, the coating is a composite based on cellulose microfibers, 70% of which comes from recycled material, made in Puglia, the cradle of the papier-mâché tradition since the 16th century. Perfect balance between material innovation and ancestral savoir-faire, it is varnished and hand painted line after line. Prism Divider, design David / Nicolas for Gallotti&Radice, modular column bookcase in Frisé-colored walnut and metal parts in satin brass. Available in versions with two and three shelves: by placing two or more columns side by side, compositions of different sizes can be created. (photo Andreas Keller)

Singapore Pavilion: "Nature, Nurture, Future"

The pavilion, in the Sustainability district, is configured as a green oasis on several floors, containing more than 8,000 plants, cared for by an eco-sustainable power system. A series of solar tubes allows the light to pass inside the rooms, while the water is produced thanks to a process of "desalination" with solar energy and then used for drip irrigation. With the theme “Nature, Nurture, Future” Singapore wants to demonstrate that the built environment can help promote nature in an urban environment by playing a fundamental role in the fight against climate change. The ground floor garden is a park that welcomes visitors from an arid setting into a green space crowned by a spectacular roof garden, while a meandering canopied walk takes visitors around and through the three thematic cones at different levels.

Caementum, designed by Marco Merendi and Diego Vencato for Pedrali, monobloc coffee table with central base made of concrete, with the addition of selected additives to guarantee technical performance, such as greater mechanical resistance and thermal shock, as well as not absorbing liquids and not stain. The base has a nylon foot, while the interior is hollow, in order to facilitate movement. Indoor and outdoor use. Melody sideboard, design Luca Roccadadria for Cantori, wooden frame and metal doors with decorative hemispheres. (photo courtesy Singapore Pavilion)

T-Chair OW58 chair in FSC certified oak (R) designed by Danish designer Ole Wanscher in 1958 and revived by Carl Hansen & Son, characterized by a sculptural T-shaped backrest that merges with the rear legs and a large seat covered in leather or fabric. Random Wood bookcase by Neuland Industriedesign for Mdf. Designed in 2005 it has become an icon of the collection, here it is in the new version in canaletto walnut, with darker veins that enhance the beauty of the wood, always maintaining reduced thickness. (photo courtesy Singapore Pavilion)

Expo Entry Portals, project by Asif Khan

The three spectacular entrance doors to Expo 2020 Dubai are a futuristic exploration of the traditional "mashrabiya", an elegant design element used throughout the region to control light and airflow. The extraordinary appearance of each portal derives from being woven entirely with ultra-light carbon fiber composite threads with a remarkable structural resistance that allows the structures to reach 21 m in height and 30 m in length, without any support. The portals feature two large doors that are opened every morning in a symbolic act of welcoming the world; lead to tree-lined courtyards, also designed by Khan, in each of the three districts: Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability.

Nest Soft by Desirée enveloping armchair with soft lines: in compact high-density polyurethane coupled with cold-foamed and expanded polyurethane, it has a soft feather padding and removable cover in fabric or leather. Metallic structure finished in matt gold or bronze. Saen table by Gabriele & Oscar Buratti for Alias, has the shape of an inverted goblet, the base is made of compact rigid polyurethane, a material with high performance, which allows to obtain compact uniform surfaces, the top is in MDF or lacquered wood in various finishes. (photo Helene Binet)

Royal by ArmaniCasa, a sartorial bar cabinet with an elongated cylindrical structure, defined by semicircular sides that also become the legs of the cabinet. Two flexible doors slide horizontally into the main structure, revealing the work area complete with shelves and a large drawer. Always maintaining a strong link with oriental influences and fashion inspirations, the piece of furniture is covered with a special two-tone weave in canneté effect paper and cotton with metal details in light brass satin finish. (photo Helene Binet)

Styling Carolina Trabattoni - Digital elaborations by Paolo Riolzi and Anna Arzuffi