Australian Expo Pavilion

Australian Expo Pavilion by Wood / Marsh Architecture won the Colorbond Award for Steel Architecture at the AIA's 2010 National Architecture Awards.

The Australian Pavilion at the 2010 World Exposition in Shanghai is a representational object and experiential showcase. National pavilions at contemporary international forums like this operate as both. The architectural expression of the building responds to the eccentricities of a symbolic and crowd-pleasing brief.

Inside the pavilion, visitors engage with exhibitions that speak of Australian life. The first impression of the building from the outside is that it looks very Australian. There is a striking resemblance to Uluru. It is like a great big piece of the Australian landscape transplanted in the fairgrounds. The more subtle material and formal associations are with the colours and shapes of the outback Australian landscape. This is most striking in the building’s silhouette against the sky. The curvaceous skin enfolding the bulging monolith is pierced and skewered by glazed circulation tubes. In this shape the weathered steel cladding exhibits a plasticity that defies its strength. This is a building that is about and from Australia.

– Jury citation

Products and materials

BlueScope Corten steel facade panel. Dulux paints. Fethers Veneer.
Midland Brick exterior pavers.
SvenskaKJ fabric.
Style Flooring. Tascot carpets. Supertuft carpets.
Lumenec internal LED lights.
King Furniture. Temperature Design. Stylecraft.
Artoz Rugs. Market Timbers. Cairns Marble.


Wood/Marsh Architecture
Melbourne, Vic, Australia
Project Team
Roger Wood, Randal Marsh, Antony Martin,
Exhibition designer
Melbourne, Vic, Australia
Acoustic consultant Aurecon
Builder Lend Lease
Facade engineer Aurecon
Project manager Lend Lease
Site Details
Location Shanghai,  China
Project Details
Status Built
Category Public / commercial
Type Culture / arts
Client Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade


Awarded Project

Published online: 1 Jul 2011
Words: National Architecture Awards Jury 2010
Images: Peter Bennetts


Architecture Australia, November 2010

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