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Water for the Soul

Central Pavilion for EXPO 2012. Yesou, South Korea. International competition, Honorable mention.

GFA: 4000 m?

Thomas Pucher, Dominik Troppan, Jan Schrader, Martin Mathy, Claus Plasencia-Kanzler, Nina Sleska

The pavilion is constructed like a ship. The main body is a floating dock which can be submerged below water like a submarine. It houses the exhibition and is the carrier of the waterfall. Using this advanced technique ? where South Korea is global market leader ? the pavilion can be shipped from production dock to exhibition place and further on after the expo. It needs no foundation.

The pavilion is linked to the pier with two ramps ? one for entrance, one for exit. They also keep it in position and regulate the difference in the tide. It is fully welded in steel but different to regular ships it is equipped with advanced insulation materials and energy producing technical equipment.

From an urban point of view the waterfall is set exactly in the centre of the expo area. It is visible from all entrances and main axes and thanks to its triangular shape it changes its perspective and view from every angle.

The jet of water can be programmed. This makes it possible to draw images or messages with the water.

A travelling landmark of re-use after the expo

The thematic pavilion is the most creative and an experimental oceanic architecture and as such it stands for the knowledge and ecological awareness of South Korea. We know from all recent EXPOS that re-use is always very difficult because it would mean to fully reorganize the exhibition every year and promote it worldwide ? in other words a fully new EXPO would have to be done every year.

Wouldn?t it be much easier ? and much more effectfull ? not to bring the world to the EXPO but the EXPO to the world?

Since the waterfall is mounted on the swimming dock it can be freely shipped to wherever possible.

In 2013 it can start a long lasting journey through the world ? from continent to continent and city to city. It will be a wandering sign of South Korea and over the years give the world an ever updated image of South Korea and a message to the world that maintaining the health of the ocean shall lead to health and prosperity of humans after all.

Korea comes to You !

The waterfall is a walkable and powerful symbol for the magnificence and wealth of the ocean. It is the centerpiece of the exhibition and the focus of a dramatic journey - one that leads you into the sea and into the magic of water. 01. The journey starts on the docks in front of the waterfall. From here a public ramp runs directly into the water of the sea. By entering it one slowly disappears under the water level and literally enters the ocean.

02. At the end of the ramp one enters a huge dark space through a niche next to the ceiling. At first glance one has the full view over this space. It houses the first exhibition area and is focusing on full-screen 3D- animations on all surrounding walls. With this technique it is possible to generate millions of images and virtual rooms in this space. Depending on the exhibition program the visitors find themselves in overwhelming scenarios of a space they thought to be the ocean they have entered.

03. After walking down the ramp and leaving the first exhibition area one enters the central area of the pavilion ? the full water patio from which the waterfall rises up 50m into the air. This is an unbelievable scenario: the power and strength of the water is fully visible to the visitors, like standing 3m next to the Niagara Falls.

In this glass wall there is a door leading to the inside of the waterfall ? through a glazed pathway one enters the center. Here you can choose between taking the glazed elevator or walk the ramp to move upwards. This journey gives a permanent impression ? moving up in the middle of rushing water ? with all the sound, the smell, the water. Here you actually FEEL the water.

04. The space on top of the structure houses the exchange lobby and additional exhibition spaces. From here a helicline ramp runs to the outside and the top of the waterfall.

05. Like in the beginning when entering the sea, here one slowly emerges inside a silent pool in the air. After the rush of the waterfall we find ourselves in a quiet and peaceful surrounding ? overlooking the EXPO and the sea while still being sheltered by the water.

The way back is another chance to experience the waterfall. Strolling down the ramp one can take another impression from the water in all its purity.

The rest of the exhibition is meant to calm down the visitors again. It is organized in a more traditional way with lots of explanations and information. After having become a friend of the ocean and the water one is now ready to slowly leave the exhibition and arrive at the docks again ? The view of the giant waterfall again behind.