World Expo, Yeosu, Korea

2012’s World Expo in Yeosu, South Korea was themed “The Living Ocean and Coast”. The Singapore Pavilion responds with the theme “Paradox-ity: City of Contrast”, inspired by the creative contrasts within the island city-state. The pavilion presents problems and solutions in sustainability in Singapore.

Type: Interpretive Design, Experiential Design, World Expo Design, Projection Mapped 3D, Tilt-shift video, Interactive Cycling, Interactive Kites

“Our pavilion was consistently ranked by the media as of the most popular and “must-see” pavilions at the Expo.”

Singapore pavilion won the prestigious Silver Award for Theme Development at the Expo 2012 Official Participants Awards organised by the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE).

It also won the Best Activity/Interactivity award by the US-based Exhibitor Magazine.

Playing on being a “Paradox City”: that Singapore possesses many paradoxes. However, our proposition is that it is not a zero-sum game that you don’t have to give up one for the other. You can be highly developed at the same time, green. The pavilion was designed as a spatial narrative in 4 zones.

Paradox-ity: The Immersive Introduction

On entering our pavilion through a container, visitors “open” into a vast space with a 3D-cube sculptured wall on one side.

Through projecting and mapping intricately onto each 3D cube, visitors are entertained and enthralled by our opening show that encapsulates and mirrors the entire storyline of the pavilion.

The show begins with water dripping and filling up an imaginary tank, eventually overflowing and turning into real water flowing down the wall. In a dreamscape-like manner, our “Paradox-ity” story unfolds.


Beautiful Trash

Passing through a walkway with a wall sculpture made entirely of used materials, visitors enter into an underwater scene with fishes swimming overhead. Little periscopes contain video images that show wildlife spotted at Pulau Semakau, Singapore’s largest landfill.

Live, Work, Play and so on

Small City, Big Dreams is on show here. 5 “dream-boxes” are interactive AV installations that transport visitors to Singapore. Literally and virtually.

Work Box

In the WORK box, visitors “stick” their heads into a cube with video screens on all 4 sides and discover a video presentation of a city that runs like clock-work, in a toy-like manner.

Live Box

In the LIVE box, visitors enter into a simulated living room with a window made up of 4 HD videos. It displays Singapore’s high-rise nestled amidst lush greenery. The window scene changes from day to night, and to even a tropical rainstorm.

Play Box

In the PLAY box, visitors maneuver a Korean and a Singaporean kite amongst many others at the Marina Barrage rooftop garden.

Conserve Box

In the CONSERVE box, visitors pedal a real bicycle to navigate through our heritage district. Watching the rider trying to avoid a pedestrian is just as fun!


Culture Box

In the CULTURE box, visitors can enjoy a virtual virtuoso performance by our young violinist on a Pepper’s Ghost stage.

Every Drop Counts

In the finale, visitors walk into a tropical rainstorm and collect the water droplets using Korean Hanji paper. As the water diffuses over the paper, it carries with it pre-dyed ink, making interesting colour patterns on the paper. In an almost spiritual and symbolic way, we want visitors to know that every drop counts.

Project Information
Main Contractor: Pico
3D Design: Zarch Collaboratives
Interpretive Multimedia: MMP
Lighting Design: SCLA
Graphics Design: The Pressroom