Milan Expo: BDP works with artist Wolfgang Buttress on incredible Hive pavilion

by Jason Holland | 15 Apr 2015

Exploring the crucial role of a bee colony in the global ecosystem, artist Wolfgang Buttress and architects BDP have created a hive structure to serve as the centrepiece of the UK’s pavilion at the upcoming Milan Expo.

The impressive 14m3 aluminium lattice structure, called the Hive, has been constructed and manufactured by Stage One, which also built Thomas Heatherwick’s London 2012 Olympic torch. The company used 115,000 individual components to turn sculptor and painter Buttress’ vision into reality.

Buttress has tweeted a series of images of the nearly complete structure ahead of the world trade fair.

Visitors to the UK pavilion will be taken on an experiential journey through the life of a bee colony, highlighting the importance of pollination to ecosystems and food supplies. The UK pavilion also offers a flavour of the British landscape and demonstrates how the country is a ‘hive of activity’ creating solutions to global challenges.

The Hive is inspired by real scientific research and groundbreaking UK technology, which can be used commercially to monitor the health of beehives, in turn making a contribution to addressing global food issues.

The visitor experience starts with a journey through an orchard and wildflower meadow, while more than 1,000 LED lights illuminated within the hive will relay information transmitted from a real beehive located 870 miles (1,400km) away in Nottingham, UK.

The Milan Expo will host 145 nations and runs for 184 days on an exhibition site covering 1,000,000sq m (10,763,910sq ft). It opens on 1 May.

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Finishing touches for Milan Expo site ahead of May opening

Exploring the crucial role of a bee colony in the global ecosystem, artist Wolfgang Buttress and architects BDP have created a hive structure to serve as the centrepiece of the UK’s pavilion at the upcoming Milan Expo. The impressive 14m3 aluminium lattice structure, called the Hive, has been constructed and manufactured by Stage One, which also built Thomas Heatherwick’s London 2012 Olympic torch. The company used 115,000 individual components to
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An original concept for the Hive / Wolfgang Buttress
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