The only pavilion entirely financed by private sponsors, the USA Pavilion is based on the concept and essential form of “the rural architecture of the Midwest,” its designer James Biber explains, who worked for two decades with the studio Pentagram before starting his own practice.

There is no today without the past, so our thinking on the theme of agriculture and scientific research relates to a basic structure in salvaged wood and steel, composed of linear, flexible, open levels, with a fast walkway, a glass shelter for the terrace (made with SmartGlass panels) that can be darkened at will, and a mobile vertical garden covering the entire lateral facade. These are also the main elements we are thinking about how to use after the Expo, in six months, because that remains a fundamental issue.

Will they be repositioned in a school or a park? Will they adapt to other uses, or be part of the construction of a new building? We will see what happens… This Universal Exposition contains the model of a smart city of the future, well inserted in traffic and rail infrastructures, amplified by the new extraurban metropolitan line.

My only fear is that the competition to be the most beautiful constructed pavilion (on a narrative level those of Austria, Chile, Russia, Bahrain, Poland, Brazil, the UK and the Vatican are very effective) to attract tourists and business reflects the same ‘trade fair’ competition of cities in the challenge to make the most iconic building; even if it is not functional, because it is alien to the life of man in terms of the construction of places and social participation.”


focus by Antonella Boisi – photos by Saverio Lombardi Vallauri  

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Overall view of the internal space.
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Overall view of the exteriors.
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The mobile vertical garden, with cabbages and lettuce, covering the entire side of the pavilion. Project and work supervision by Genius Loci Architettura. The pavilion has been made with the contributions of AHEC, Arper, Cora Lumber, Electrolux, Flos, Heller, Imola Legno, Mapei, Marazzi, 3M, Simmetrico, Smart-Glass, Steelcase, Viabizzuno.