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Valencia's World Design Capital 2022 pavilion is an ode to local craft

Promotion: a pavilion wrapped in a ceramic-like "skin" and topped with an undulating wooden roof has been installed in Valencia's town square for World Design Capital Valencia 2022.

The pavilion, called Àgora València, serves as a central hub for more than 200 activities taking place during the city's tenure as the World Design Capital 2022.

Events include workshops, exhibitions, conferences and meetings that intend to bring the Valencian community together to celebrate design, talent and creativity.

The events intend to bring the Valencian community together

The structure's design was led by Miguel Arraiz, World Capital of Design Valencia 2022 architect and projects director, together with Arqueha Arquitectura y Urbanismo, which was responsible for technical development, and interior design studio Cosín Estudio.

Spanning 350 square metres and standing nine metres tall, Àgora València has a modular framework that allows it to be easily assembled and disassembled, highlighting the event's commitment to circularity and durability.

A photograph of the white pavilion structure Àgora València
The pavilion is called Àgora València

Its construction uses local materials – ceramic and wood – and blends both traditional and avant-garde techniques.

The space includes an events space and an exhibition area to showcase Valencian design alongside design from around the world.

The structure is currently a meeting point in which both visitors and locals can "get to know professionals, entities, institutions and companies rooted in the culture of creativity and innovation".

People listening to a talk in the pavilion
The pavilion has hosted a number of design-related talks

Referencing the city's rich history of ceramic production, the pavilion is wrapped in an open framework made up of ceramic-like tiles placed perpendicularly to provide shade from the sun throughout the day while letting air circulate.

Developed by the companies Inalco and Wandegar the tiles are made from MDi, a ceramic-like mineral surface material made from 50 per cent recycled material from its own production process.

A photograph of people in the pavilion
Thousands of people have attended the pavilion

Its vareta wood roof was created by artisan Manolo García who is a fallero artist – someone who produces combustible pieces for the Valencian 'Fallas' festival, which is held each year in honour of Saint Joseph, the patron saint of carpenters.

Vareta is a traditional wood carving technique that involves cutting and joining fine strips of wood to create sculptures with impressive curved forms.

A photograph of the pavilion
Events include workshops, exhibitions, conferences and meetings

"From the beginning we devised the project as a gift for the present and the future of Valencia, putting people at the heart," explained Miguel Arraiz. "In this unique opportunity to bring design and its transversality to the citizenry, companies and institutions, we have set out to investigate the materials and the artisan tradition of our land."

"In addition to extolling the Valencian roots, which describe a unique way of doing things, the materials and the construction systems that allow the modular and removable format of the pavilion are a commitment to circularity and durability."

A render of the pavilion
The materials used in the project are intended to reduce the temperature inside by ten degrees

At sunset, an immersive lighting installation by the creative studio Radiante turns the pavilion into a lighthouse intended to symbolise the pride of the city of Valencia as the World Design Capital.

Àgora València has its own design programme, which includes a number of discussions on how design can improve lives. It also includes activities for children with a number of workshops and musical and artistic performances.

"The pavilion is also a space for promoting Valencian creativity through meetings with the media, live radio shows, presentations by professionals and more relaxed encounters," said Valencia World Design Capital.

A close-up photograph of the white pavilion
The structure is made from local ceramic and wood

Àgora València is a project of World Design Capital Valencia 2022 and the Valencia City Council, which has the support of the Provincial Council of Valencia, La Marina de València and brands Inalco, Wandegar and iGuzzini.

The project is intended to "take over" from the pavilions built in the previous World Design Capitals, including Helsinki and Taipei.

To learn more about World Design Capital Valencia 2022 visit its website.

World Design Capital Valencia 2022 takes place in Valencia, Spain from 1 January to 31 December. See Dezeen Events Guide for an up-to-date list of architecture and design events taking place around the world.

Partnership content

This article was written by Dezeen for World Design Capital Valencia 2022 as part of a partnership. Find out more about Dezeen partnership content here.