Russia to create 'mechanics of wonder' at Expo

13 April 2021

Saman Haziq

Colour, creativity and culture will be the highlight of the Russian pavilion at Expo 2020 that is to open doors on October 1 this year.

The pavilion will present endless possibilities of the human mind and heart, said Olga Sayapina, project manager at the pavilion. “Titled ‘Mechanics of Wonder', the Russian pavilion is directly in line with the Expo theme “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future”. Our pavilion will be an exposition on processes regulating human life in the society: forming common values that empower the future of mankind. The main objectives are human unification and cooperation to create a better world in which the human mind becomes fundamental. We will seek to demonstrate with specific examples how connecting minds drives progress, expands physical and mental mobility,” she explained.

“It is implemented with two ring shapes that symbolise the anthroposphere (our inner world) and the noosphere (the world around us, and how we interact with it). The thread connecting these two rings are the five forms of the human mind. These ideas will be visualised and represented in the form of interactive exhibits, installations, and objects at the pavilion. Everything has come from our minds. Visitors will see how our minds generate ideas, create works of art, technical innovations, and make new discoveries,” she added.

Sergey Tchoban, the architect of the Russian pavilion, said the idea was to experiment, explore and create the building with simple lines. “Since Russia is a colourful country with people from various backgrounds, we created a “colourful planet” kind of a façade with six contrasting colours with lines (using wires that can be recycled). The building will look like it is gradually changing its form due to the moving lines around the facade as we wanted to show the world that we are ‘moving into the future',” he explained.

The facade is expected to be complete in the next couple of months or so, added Tchoban. “As soon as visitors enter, they will see a huge dome-shaped hall with shops, restaurants and many other attractions. They will move upwards from one level to the next, finally reaching the main exhibition dome. The architectural style resembles cathedrals in Russia that are dome-shaped. We also have two domes, inside each other that is based on the concept of Russian wooden doll Matryoshka.”

Visitors can expect multiple Russian art forms, including a music festival, said Alena Strygina, director of the cultural programme at the pavilion. “While we have planned around 20 cultural events, we may include more as the final schedule is still in progress. The pavilion will open with the Matryoshka music festival that will bring together the art and music of the country. We will also have a number of music festivals that will focus mostly on the young audience. We will also have art installations by modern Russian artists who specialise in unique forms of art such as Dashi Namdakov.”

Former Miss Russia Victoria Lopyreva has been named as the official ambassador of the Russian pavilion and popular animated cartoon characters of famed Russian television, The Fixies, will be the mascots for the pavilion.

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