Dubai: Romanians sip on naturally carbonated water – its frizzy properties owing to carbon dioxide released from the volcanic Carpathian Mountains of Romania. Nature’s very own sparkling water is now flowing to Expo 2020 Dubai among other varieties sourced directly from these mineral springs.
In the Sustainability cluster, the Romanian pavilion hopes to re-establish humanity’s connection with Nature, a relationship battered by exploitation and rapid industrialisation, under the theme of ‘New Nature’. Though Romania has large reserves of wild forests, the country pushes its natural springs as its main element in permanent exhibitions.
A floating ceramic cube
Designed by Romanian architecture firm Cumulus, the ceramic pavilion stands white and cubic on an area of 1,400 square metres surrounded by a reflective, glimmering ‘water mirror’. Visitors will enter through an opening that resembles a portico and find the inner enclosure made of glass.
On the first floor, Romania will introduce four pillars: Nature, tradition, education and technology. This space will host a video exhibition, artistic events, a dedicated education and innovation area and a water bar. For fostering B2B (business to business) connections, the second floor offers a lounge area and two conference rooms.
Cutting through all the floors is zenithal lighting that allows natural light into the pavilion through four inverted semicircles in the ceiling.
H2Ro Water bar
There are some 2,000 mineral springs across the Romanian territory that bestow the country with different types of mineral water. A similar range of options will be available to visitors at a water bar under the H2Ro brand, offering curious testers samples of Romania’s bottled spring water.
Complementing the experience is the Romanian Water Springs exhibition and the Danube Delta presentation, the river delta being Europe’s second-largest whose greater portion falls under Romania. Its well-preserved and dynamic ecosystem is home to more than 300 species of birds and 45 species of freshwater fish, which earned it a spot under the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco).
A film by Mircea Cantor
Illustrating Nature’s prevailing power over humanity will be a short film made by Romanian artist Mircea Cantor, known for his diverse media application from video to sculpture.
Released in 2018, the film titled 'Aquila Non Capit Muscas', a Latin proverb meaning ‘the eagle doesn’t catch flies’, traces the flight of a white-tailed eagle whose prey is a man-made drone, an intrusive piece of technology in a natural realm.
It's all about sparking conversation at the Romania Pavilion; the relationship between nature and humanity and how it can be improved. And about tasting the goodness of water straight from the springs - this is where you find out if all water tastes the same.
- The writer is an intern with Gulf News.