A layer of colourful solar panels inspired by Claude Monet’s Water Lilies oil paintings cover the roof and rear façade of the France Pavilion, showcasing the nation’s cultural riches and dedication to sustainability.
Titled ‘Light, Lights’, the pavilion’s theme explores light as an enabler of progress, a vehicle for connections and a source of heat and creativity. It seeks to embody the Age of Enlightenment, the 18th century movement spearheaded by French intellectuals that emphasised concepts such as knowledge exchange and tolerance.
Passing by the structure in Expo 2020’s Mobility District, you will notice a huge façade and canopy that combine to form a giant screen, as well as a store and a bistro with a terrace resembling a French urban setting.
Meanwhile, its four gardens will contain plant species that can be found in France such as olive trees, yuccas, lemon trees and oleanders.
Heading inside you will feel like you have entered a parallel universe, immersed in a light show that reveals imaginary landscapes. As the journey continues, you can discover the sights, sounds and scents of quintessentially French landscapes, learn about the nation’s advances in mobility and enjoy continuously changing temporary exhibitions.
Upstairs, business visitors will find a wealth of opportunities to work and socialise – including a 100-seat auditorium, an innovation lab, meeting rooms and a lounge bar.
Despite the pavilion’s 5,100 sqm size, its eco-footprint will be minimised thanks to a variety of inventive solutions. More than 80 per cent of the building’s power will come from the sun, while a micro water treatment plant will reduce the demand for fresh water by 30 per cent.
Once Expo 2020 finishes in April 2021, the pavilion will be dismantled and repurposed elsewhere.
In recognition of the innovation that will be displayed throughout the pavilion, the French postal service is set to issue a stamp in its honour at the Paris Philex trade show in June 2020.
Keep checking the Expo 2020 website for further Country Pavilion design announcements, with 190 nations set to participate in the largest event ever staged in the Arab world.