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Montreal, Canada, 2021-10-01 –

KANVA, a Montreal firm recognized for its significant projects that transcend the limits of forms and architectural forms, is proud to unveil TRACKS, a multisensory and stimulating exhibition on the grounds of the Canada Pavilion at the 2020 Dubai World Expo. Commissioned by Global Affairs Canada and produced by the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) to populate the plaza grounds leading to the pavilion entrance hall, KANVA took a national, yet universal approach to designing a public facility that Aligns with Canada’s participation in the Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability themes of Expo and Expo 2020 Dubai.

” The concept of TRACKS started with the location of the Canada Pavilion in the sustainability section of the Expo grounds and with the main exhibit inspired by Canada’s landscapes and natural diversity, ”says Rami Bebawi, KANVA partner and lead architect of the TRACKS project. “We wanted to create something that would focus on the threats that climate change and global warming pose to these same landscapes, and more specifically to the species that inhabit them.”

Touching a sensitive chord

The project struck a chord with KANVA’s long-held core values, and the company embarked on a mission to connect hearts, heads and hands in search of a brighter future that reinterprets relationships. between the inhabitants of the planet. Developing a concept that would be artistic and poetic, but also touching and meaningful, they studied multiple aspects of global warming and habitat degradation before adopting a visual that captured the very essence of their message – a growing murmur of birds, swirling across the sky in massive, collective movement.

In order to capture and convey an urgent message around the issue of rapid habitat decline, KANVA came up with the idea of ​​fossilization of an inhabited landscape, where birds are suspended in motion in a fossilized form that preserve ‘TRACES ” of their existence.

“Whether it’s due to climate change or oppressive human development, as landscapes disappear, so do the species that inhabit them,” notes Bebawi. “They are simply erased from memory, and our collective amnesia allows us to persist in their destruction. TRACES reinterprets this cycle by fossilizing the species so that it is not forgotten, ”adds Olga Karpova, architect and senior project manager at KANVA.

Think inside the box

KANVA’s expression unfolds in a series of eight boxes, spread across the esplanade of the Canada Pavilion in a seemingly random fashion, against the traditional linear grid of human development. Each The museum box, measuring 8 ‘x 8’ x 8 ‘, contains a precious object that embodies the beauty of dynamic life in suspension, complemented by multimedia interactions developed with artist Étienne Paquette. As visitors make their way to the pavilion entrance hall, they are invited to move through a variety of multisensory experiences of discovery and self-ownership.

The jewel initiates the conversation by placing fossilized birds on a pedestal, with built-in lighting that presents them as beautiful, yet troubled, jewels. The trip goes to Proximity, the most impressive in terms of scale, featuring a wall of extraordinarily filtered light accentuating the movement of birds in a vertical landscape. The Memorial strikes a more emotional chord, symbolizing a horizontal tomb where visitors find themselves paying homage to a fallen species. The rectangular base with integrated lighting features fossilized birds as they fly over a beautiful landscape of strata of wood.

The forgotten symbolizes the careless rejection of objects we once cherished, with stacked cubes of illuminated prototypes that have been put aside and underestimated. Headquarters invokes a sense of individual responsibility, seating visitors alone at an old school desk. As the office opens, sounds of a waterscape and a 3D printed bird unfold in a black ink seascape, depicting the effects of ocean spills through the distressed gaze of a bird struggling mightily to survive. The meeting focuses on collective responsibility, embodying the problem-solving process around a dining table, and inspired by a glowing cube of fossilized birds emerging from the center of the table. The unstable sounds of birds in distress gradually evolve into soft, soothing harmonies that symbolize hope as visitors sit down at the table.

However, The sanctuary is an extraordinary enclosure devoid of human interference, with its white canvas animated by a flood of birds immersed in a world without humans. The eighth box from KANVA delivers the most striking message of all. Consciousness consists of four chairs, one in each corner of the box, with an empty bird cage, door open, hanging from the ceiling. The heightened white noise indicates that something is wrong, and as visitors sit down and face each other, the mood mellows into a soothing songbird garden serenade. But the cage is empty and the bird is gone.

In addition to the eight artifact boxes, KANVA also designed a mural that runs along a large curved wall in the entrance hall of the Canada Pavilion. The mural presents a multiplicity of birds in flight, at different depths and distances, against a background that can be interpreted as sky, mountains, forests or water. While the mural is a stationary display for Expo 2020 Dubai, the eight cubes are destined to travel the world, where they will persevere as ambassadors of hope.

A truly enriching experience

Development TRACKS has been an extremely enriching experience for the company concerned with the environment and society. Beyond the disciplines of traditional architecture, the project immersed the company in global issues, as well as the in-depth study of bird species and their various movements and sounds. In creating their art, KANVA also engaged in processes such as digitizing, hand sculpting and animating 3D prints of hundreds of different scales and movements, each reinforcing their conviction along the way. .

“We could not be more proud of this work, which has the capacity to be light, beautiful and entertaining, but also to serve as a vehicle for education, awareness, awareness and emergency,” concludes Rami Bebawi. “Hyper-development has left so much damage, and the time has passed for simple recognition. Responsibility must now take action.

CREDITS

KANVA: Original concept, creative art direction and production design

Creos: Production and tours manager

Étienne Paquette: Multimedia design and artistic direction

National Film Board of Canada (NFB): Production

Global Affairs Canada: Government of Canada department responsible for Canada’s participation in Expo 2020 Dubai

TECHNICAL SHEET

Name of the project: TRACKS

Site: Canada Pavilion, Expo 2020 Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Appointment: October 1stst 2021 – March 31, 2022

World Tour: Dates and information to be determined

Collaborators:
Serge Maheu: Multimedia Technical Director and Integrator

Carine Khalife: Visual artist

Javier Asencio: Composer and designer of immersive sound environments

Architects of the Canada Pavilion: Moriyama and Teshima

About KANVA

Founded in 2003, by Rami Bebawi and Tudor Radulescu, KANVA is a multidisciplinary architectural firm based in Montreal, composed of dynamic architects, whose work is at the forefront of thought, imagination, drawing and the construction of collective spaces. KANVA’s approach seeks to question and transform the built environment, and the company approaches each project as an opportunity to tell a story and expand the scope and dialogue between art and architecture. KANVA embraces architecture, art and science as learning tools to transform the built environment for those who live there.

The award-winning company has received numerous accolades and accolades for their body of work, including the 2015 Emerging Architectural Practice Award from the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada. In 2017, KANVA received the Prix de Rome from the Canada Council for the Arts for her research “Adaptive Boundaries”. The following year, the company’s innovation Imago won the Experimental – Future Projects award at the World Architecture Festival (WAF). More recently, KANVA completed the Montreal Biodome Science Museum, highlighting its dedication to a sensitive and meaningful practice.

About Créos

Creos offers consulting and project management services for the design, planning and development of technology and art in public spaces, with the aim of transforming these areas into lively and attractive spaces combining creativity and efficiency. .

As the world’s leading agency for interactive installation tours, Creos transforms public spaces into must-see destinations around the world. Creos offers a diverse portfolio of facilities tailored to locations and participants, offering visitors a unique sensory and interactive experience.

About Etienne Paquette

Étienne Paquette, Ph.D., is a multimedia artist and writer who takes audiences on fantastic journeys with immersive installations that borrow elements from different art forms. He has increasingly taken a transdisciplinary approach to his work, blending narrative and technological experimentation to create different ways for audiences to participate in stories. His work has won awards in the field of interactive and immersive experiences, garnered mainstream media coverage, and has been discussed in scientific papers, including one published by the MIT Press.

He has produced pieces such as Wind Instrument (2018; Numix Award, in situ Experiential & Interactive Installation, 2019), Arctic Beyond Ice (2017; MUSE Gold Award, Multimedia Installations, American Alliance of Museums, Phoenix, Arizona, 2018) and Megaphone (2013; selected for the Interaction Awards, Amsterdam, 2014 and winner of the Boomerang Grand Prix, Interactive Environments, Montreal, 2013).

About the National Film Board of Canada
The NFB is the Canadian public producer and distributor of award-winning documentaries, author’s animation, interactive stories and participatory experiences, in collaboration with talented creators from across the country. The NFB is taking action to combat systemic racism and become a more open and diverse organization, while working to strengthen Indigenous-led production and gender equity in film and digital media. NFB productions have won over 7,000 awards, including 12 Oscars. To access this unique content, visit NFB.ca.

About Global Affairs Canada

Global Affairs Canada defines, shapes and advances Canada’s interests and values ​​in a complex global environment. They manage diplomatic relations, promote international trade and provide consular support. They lead international aid efforts for development, humanitarian aid, peace and security. They also contribute to national security and the development of international law.

Expo 2020 Dubai provides Canada with an exceptional platform to attract foreign investment, support international education, increase tourism, promote Canadian innovation, diversify international markets and promote new business opportunities for Canadian companies.


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