The intersection of art, science, and technology has brought about a wave of innovation that is changing the way we view the world around us. This dynamic fusion is particularly evident in the Novartis Campus in Basel, which boasts a stunning new pavilion that marries the latest in architectural design with cutting-edge technology to create a unique canvas for artistic expression.
Designed by acclaimed architect Michele de Lucchi, the pavilion's most striking feature is the semi-transparent media facade that covers it. Developed in collaboration with iart, this facade comprises 10,000 diamond-shaped organic photovoltaic panels and 30,000 embedded LEDs that radiate light both outward and inward, creating a mesmerizing interplay of light and transparency.
This unique design feature has been artfully utilized by renowned artists Daniel Canogar, Esther Hunziker, and the duo Semiconductor, who were selected by HEK - Haus für elektronische Künste, Basel, to showcase their installations. Inspired by the intricacies of the human body, their installations bring the pavilion to life, creating an immersive experience that celebrates the wonders of science, art, and technology.
The media facade's partial transparency plays a crucial role in the art installations, as it enables the light to shimmer not only over the building envelope but also through it. The roundness of the pavilion is no coincidence, as it emerged conceptually from the amorphousness of human cells, creating a powerful synergy between the art installations and the pavilion's design.
The pavilion's artistic expression through its unique media facade is a novel form of "Kunst am Bau" ("art on the building"), setting it apart from traditional art installations. After sunset, the media facade features daily displays that are enhanced with bespoke animations for special events, while during the day, it exhibits moving text.
In conclusion, the Novartis Campus pavilion is a testament to the transformative power of combining art, science, and technology. The pavilion's innovative design and use of cutting-edge technology create a canvas for artistic expression that blurs the boundaries between art, architecture, and technology, making it a truly unique destination for visitors seeking to explore the wonders of the modern world.