|Vo Trọng Nghia's Green Ladder pavilion in the State Library of Queensland, Brisbane. — Photo aparchitectureforum.com
HA NOI (VNS) — A bamboo or "green steel" structure designed by noted Vietnamese architect Vo Trong Nghia is being displayed at an annual architectural pavilion series in Queensland's Brisbane, Australia.
The event is the fourth edition of "Fugitive Structures", an annual architectural pavilion series hosted by the Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation (SCAF).
The 2016 pavilion by Vo Trong Nghia Architects is the first by an Asian firm to feature in SCAF's "Fugitive Structures" programme.
The grid-like bamboo construction incorporates a dense forest made of natural materials, installed at the State Library of Queensland's forecourt.
A clear ceiling floats above, creating a shelter from the elements, while allowing visitors to view the sky. The structure is highly porous, with entry points for adults and children to walk or crawl through.
"I want to bring nature back to the city," Nghia said. "In Ho Chi Minh City, the population has reached nearly 10 million, with only 5.35sq.km of green space, which is just 0.25 per cent of the entire city. Viet Nam's unrestricted economic development has devastated the natural environment across the country. This is the problem architects need to solve."
The bamboo used in the structure has received traditional treatment for two months in natural waterways, followed by a month's treatment with fire smoke, he said.
"The design of the SCAF pavilion centres around the two central pillars of Vo Trong Nghia's approach to architecture, which are innovative use of bamboo, and his passion – and self-imposed duty – to green the world's urban landscapes with plants and vegetation," Gene Sherman, executive director of SCAF, said.
Nghia promotes the limits of a strong, lightweight and highly sustainable traditional building material. He aimed to increase biodiversity and to reconnect city dwellers with the natural environment, Sherman said.
The structure will be displayed at the site till May 15 and will be shifted to Sydney between July 8 and December 10.
"Fugitive Structures" is the first series in Australia to explore the potential of temporary pavilions as tools for experimentation, and for testing new concepts and construction techniques.
Nghia was recently named one of the world's four edgiest architects by the New York Post.
Vo Trong Nghia Architects now comprises 50 local and international architects.
The company is well known for having designed the Vietnamese pavilion for the World Expo in both Shanghai (2010) and Milan (2015).
It won five World Architecture Festival Awards (2014 and 2012) and in 2012, Nghia was named Architect of the Year in Viet Nam. — VNS