• Bahrain Agriculture Crisis Context
  • Disappearing Identity: Oil and Palm Trees
  • Concept Diagram
  • Design Evolution
  • Design Approach and Flexibility
  • A Forest of Drill Pipes Acting as a Pronaos
  • Pavilion View
  • Pavilion View

Bahraini Pavilion

Milan, Italy

In a modern world of constant rapid growth we strive to maintain a link to our cultural roots. We are defined as a nation by what we are most recognized for.

The pavilion sets the main structure with a grid oil drill pipes previously used in Bahrain. A brutally repetitive layer that makes a statement of its existence as part of the history and the present of Bahrain. The oil drill pipes in their rusted form are an expression of the harm caused to Bahrain’s agriculture post the oil discovery. The project also emphasizes the disappearance of Bahrain’s agriculture due to the loss of irrigation, the damage of countless palm trees, and erasing the memory of a rich agrarian Bahrain. The oil drill pipes suspend the nature of Bahrain, floating the idea of a vulnerable Bahraini agriculture.

The ground layer is a physical experience through time. The pronaos of the pavilion is a layer of a forest of drill pipes encaging the agriculture. A historical reference to a temple-like entry of closely spaced grand columns. Walking through an entry of rusted drill pipes, there is an up-close tangible experience between the visitor and Bahrain. This forest of the oil drill pipes is an introduction to the pavilion, a brutal repetition of an uncomfortable congested space. Meandering in this forest, there is a feeling of tension between the visitor and the oil drill pipes.

Design Team 

Ahmed Al-Ali, Farid Esmaeil, Riccardo Robustini, Abdullah Bashir, Dana Sheikh

Ministry of Culture, Kingdom of Bahrain
Bahrain National Pavilion
Built up Area‎ 
1500 sqm
Competition Entry