The display category at the World Architecture Festival this year was not only about displaying objects, but even more about telling stories. Many of the display nominees were more like exquisite small museums. In the category we also found two of the pavilions from the Shanghai-Expo, where architecture itself is supposed to tell the story of a country. The category winner the Spanish pavilion by Miralles Tagliabue EMBT, is as much a piece of art as it is architecture.

The idea of taking wicker, even though not solely a Spanish material, shows what architecture can do when Expos like this send architects off doing the unthinkable. It stands out as a building, and a story, that the visitors to the event will remember. The container of the exhibition becomes an ephemeral poetic and strongly memorable image of the creativity of Spain. The connection of the Chinese visitors to the craft of wicker making encourages a level of sympathy with Spanish craftspeople of past times.

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