Buttress’ Hive is the successor to Thomas Heatherwick’s Seed Cathedral and has been inspired by “the unique role of the honeybee”.
Hive will compete against 146 other countries pavilions at The Universal Expo event which will be held in Milan between May – October 2015. Each country is looking to address the challenge of how to feed the world as the global population increases.
The £6 million hive design will see visitors walk through a fruit orchard and wildflower meadow to reach a “golden orb” made of a fine steel lattice based on the design of honeycomb.
While Hive will give an impression of British food, music and fashion, it has primarily been designed to draw attention to the fall in the numbers of honeybees and to show how research and technology are helping to address challenges including food security and biodiversity.
It will be twinned with real hives and react to activity by pulsating glowing and buzzing.
Hive is a 14x14x14 meter structure and will be constructed of 100,000 components, which are being machined by Stage One, the company delivering the design. It has worked on similar projects such as realising Heatherwick’s Olympic Cauldron.