Pavilion of Gifts

One of the most fascinating aspects of Burning Man is the idea of gifting, the event of exchanging goods that takes place between participants with no commercial aims. This notion plays a fundamental role in the relationships that occur between people but also between people and their physical, built environment. The event of gifting is an action between one person which creates a reaction to the second one. This interaction can equally inform the spatial conditions and appearance of an architectural structure when such an event takes place within it. The aim of this project is to create a system which equally participates in this exchange procedure and which interacts with visitors in giving and receiving gifts. The ‘Pavilion of Gifts’ aims to manifest the different conditions of the event of gifting as it will actively participate with visitors. New spatial and social relationships will occur, where most of them are unpredictable but very interesting and original.

The design of the pavilion derives from the geometry of spirals. Spirals, are found in nature in plants and animals and their form is defined by mathematical expressions. The ‘Pavilion of Gifts’ employes a series of spirals, which when set together will form an aesthetically attractive and beautiful pavilion. The structure of each spiral is formed by a series of wooden triangular in shape pieces, all of the same shape but different in size. Because of the bending and flexible capacities of the material, the spiral will be formed with no extra components or joints. Each wooden piece is designed to fit with the next one with no extra component. In between of this wooden spiral, bags will be attached with a hidden circuit of LEDs which will make them to illuminate when left empty.

People passing by will fill in the illuminated bags with whatever they like and they will be free to open another bag and take the gift which is set from someone else within it. The illumination of the pavilion will be defined by the gift exchange procedure and will vary constantly. In this first approach the visitor would create an interactive relationship with the structure.

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