Ontario House lights up Vancouver
The Ontario Pavilion for the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games was designed as a physical and experiential gateway to Ontario. Evocative, light, shimmering and seductive; the pavilion provided a
unique impression of Ontario’s lively character. With an exterior translucent screen projecting varying degrees of visibility, the structure prompted visitors to shift their perception of what defines transparency.
As a founding metaphor, the Pavilion references Niagara Falls – one of Ontario’s most recognisable icons, and foremost gateways to Ontario. The Pavilion’s exterior enclosure mimics this energetic flow and misting of water, creating a lively shimmering surface to seduce visitors inside. This Pavilion has been designed to come alive, changing with different light and mood. The south perimeter of the Pavilion follows the southern geographical contour of Ontario, and embraces a lively outdoor activation space, used for mass displays promotions and queuing.
The exterior of the Pavilion was richly animated by a systematic array of continuously up-lit, fabric wrapped panels and curtains of cable rope, integrated with medium resolution digitised LED array walls, capable of displaying large-scale panoramic video and messaging. The interior event space was designed to be completely flexible, while at the same time providing an adaptable venue for all activities.
Hariri Pontarini Architects’ design for Ontario House carefully concealed a temporary structure with a series of tensioned cords. Arranged in vertical rows along the front and sides of the pavilion, the cords created an elegant screen symbolising the Niagara waterfalls. The screen, varying in effect from day to night, also provided a solid form around a large outdoor queuing area leading to the pavilion’s main attraction; a 4D theatre experience of Ontario.