As part of the Burnham Plan Centennial celebrations, Zaha Hadid Architects designed one of the two Burnham Pavilions. The Burnham Plan Centennial is all about celebrating the bold plans and big dreams of Daniel Burnham’s visionary Plan of Chicago. It’s about reinvention and improvement on an urban scale and about welcoming the future with innovative ideas and technologies. The design merges new formal concepts with the memory of Burnham’s bold, historic urban planning.
The pavilion is composed of an intricate curved aluminum structure, with each element shaped and welded in order to create its unique fluid form. Fabric skins have been tightly zipped around the metal frame to create the curvilinear shape. The interior skin also serves as the screen for a video installation by Thomas Gray that explores Chicago’s past and future.
“Fabric is both a traditional and a high-tech material whose form is directly related to the forces applied to it – creating beautiful geometries that are never arbitrary. I find this very exciting.” - Hadid.