The UK pavilion at the Milan Expo 2015 has been designed by Lady Bay artist Wolfgang Buttress.
The monumental task to get it finished took only a year and it was completed 2 weeks before doors of the expo opened. Wolfgang’s projects normally take 3 years to complete.
The inspiration came from the plight of bees whose numbers have been declining, in part due to the use of pesticides and insecticides.
The giant hive takes the form of an aluminium sphere, is made up of over 180,000 components and weighs 30 tonnes.
The artist’s vision is that people imagine they are bees as they go through the pavilion as if they are flying through an English orchard meadow with lush gardens. It’s planted head high to give the impression of a bee’s view and ends in the huge 17 metre high stylised bee hive.
The UK pavilion is one of more than 140 at the international Milan Expo 2015. Over 20 million visitors are expected to attend. The UK exhibition aims to show that the country is a hive of innovation and creativity. Exhibitors are holding a series of cultural and science events on ways to feed the planet’s growing population.
Wolfgang’s work has been shown across the globe including Tokyo, Belfast, Brisbane and Canberra. His sculptural work “signing skies” been recently shown at the Nottingham Contemporary.