Guadalajara International Book Fair (FIL), one of the world's largest book fairs, tasked MET Studio to design the guest of honour pavilion, which this year features Latin America. Each year the FIL brings together over 1,900 publishing houses from 44 countries and over 20,000 book professionals, including publishers, literary agents, bookstore owners, librarians, distributors, authors, reading advocates and translators.
"For the first time in FIL's history the Guest of Honour pavilion focus is not about one nation, it is about bringing together and celebrating the many different countries and cultures of Latin America," said Alex McCuaig, Chairman of MET Studio. "It is a significantly important and exciting project for MET Studio and it shows a genuine trust in us from the organisers at FIL who have come to know us through our on-going work in Mexico."
MET Studio, who previously designed a Drugs Information Centre in Culiacan and who are currently designing a series of galleries for the Museum of Environmental Sciences in Guadalajara, have been appointed to develop the design concepts for the Latin America pavilion, which will be visited by over 750,000 literary enthusiasts. The pavilion design takes its inspiration from a kaleidoscope - one that reflects light, colour and shapes with a concept that represents the warmth, cultural diversity, identities, languages and landscapes of the Latin American countries.
The 1700 m2 pavilion will be sited at the very heart of the fair, featuring a flowing overhead canopy inspired by the landscapes and biodiversity of Latin America from which individual kaleidoscopes will be suspended. Each kaleidoscope is illuminated and highlighted by a warm palette of patterns and colours, a combination of mirrors and localised sound to attract and engage enquiring visitors.
Ground level will see structures of natural materials that feature screen-prints and textures, echoing the patterns and colours of the canopy. These structures will act to 'zone' the semi-open areas of the Guest of Honour pavilion, such as a media set, auditorium seating up to 150 people, audio visual cabin, bookstore, photo booth, traditional hand craft store, social and rest areas, an information centre and an organisers' office.
"We wanted to capture the cultural and bio diversity of Latin America and reflect its spirit in the design of the pavilion," explained Peter Karn, Creative Director of MET Studio. "From the canopy representing the natural landscapes to the vibrant colours and changing patterns of the kaleidoscopes reflecting the many different cultures, the pavilion will be designed as a kind of abstracted vision of Latin America."