Making Waves At Expo 2020 Dubai

The Bahrain National Pavilion under the theme ‘Density Weaves Opportunity’ was inaugurated at Expo 2020 Dubai

The culmination of years of continuous work and relentless effort, the Pavilion was inaugurated by HE Shaikha Mai bint Mohammed Al Khalifa, Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities President and Commissioner General of the Bahrain Pavilion, in the presence of VIPs and guests from across the world. 

“Today we are present at Expo 2020 Dubai and our message to the world is that culture makes achievements possible and promotes nations,” said Her Excellency. “Culture is a ray of hope in a world recovering from a crisis that has spread across all aspects of life.”

“The Kingdom of Bahrain is present with its ancient heritage and rich history which is translated to visitors through our pavilion that displays the beauty of our buildings and urban innovation – both past and modern.” 

Shaikha Mai added that the National Pavilion of Bahrain is a culmination of many successful participations in prestigious international forums that will further reaffirm the density of Bahrain’s civilization and human elements that exist in a relatively small geographical area. 

She stressed that this density lays the foundation to create promising opportunities in various fields such as economy, culture and sustainable development. 

“The Kingdom’s participation in Expo 2020 Dubai is the ideal opportunity to promote the most beautiful image of Bahrain, which is reflected through distinct civilizational elements and cultural components,” added Shaikha Mai. 

“It is a destination that offers a unique experience for visitors from across the world through its ancient cities such as Manama and Muharraq in addition to the sites registered on the UNESCO World Heritage List – the Bahrain Fort, the Pearling Path, and the Dilmun burial mounds.” 

“Bahrain also has a cultural infrastructure consisting of museums, sites and visitor centres that showcase the tale of civilizations spanning over 4,000 years.” 

Her Excellency explained that the National Pavilion reflects the concept of density through a unique architectural design and a diverse cultural programme. 

She also added that the young volunteers manning the Pavilion are an essential part of the human power that will contribute towards the success of Bahrain’s participation and noted the participation of musicians, artists and craftspeople from Bahrain. 

Bahrain’s participation in Expo 2020 Dubai is represented by the Bahrain Authority for culture and Antiquities in collaboration with the Economic Development Board (as a business partner) and in cooperation with Gulf Air, the National Bank of Bahrain, the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, the Bahrain Institute for Pearls and Gemstones (Danat), the Bahrain Chamber for Commerce and Industry, Tamkeen, the Sovereign Wealth Fund of Bahrain (Mumtalakat), Export Bahrain, the Bahrain Tourism and Exhibition Authority, Export Bahrain and Batelco. 

This collaborative efforts aims to utilize this opportunity as a catalyst to stimulate economic growth and provide job opportunities for years to come. 

The inauguration of the National Pavilion of Bahrain at Expo 2020 Dubai was attended by a large number of visitors who praised the pavilion and its content which reflects the density of Bahrain’s cultural production. 

Visitors were also introduced to the different facets of density in Bahrain through the pavilion’s hosts who were dressed in attire designed by Bahraini fashion designer Hala Kaiksow, in close collaboration with the Bani Jamra Textile Factory, while also offering authentic Bahraini hospitality through innovative culinary creations by Bahraini chefs Bassam Al Alawi and Lulwa Al Sowalih at the pavilion cafe. 

The National Pavilion of Bahrain is an open and slightly submerged space accessed by a ramp that forms a bridge from the exterior to the interior. The structure of this central space is a 24m high rectangular building with a central and open exhibition space held by 126 columns – which are 11cm in thickness. 

This central space includes the main exhibition area, gift shop and cafe, all of which have been arranged in a free-flowing manner between the columns as a physical spatial representation of the pavilion’s density-centred theme. 

Like walking through a dense forest, the 126 steel columns allow visitors to freely experience the exhibition and planned pavilion programme, while the aluminum-made facade signifies one of the Kingdom’s main exports. 

The entire structure was designed to allow it to be completely dismantled and rebuilt at a permanent location in Bahrain following the end of the six months. 

Different period installations will be installed in the space and transformed over the six-months creating a different scenography that changes the visitor’s perspective and reading of the space. 

Each of the installations was created through a collaborative process and crafted by hand in Bahrain using various traditional and modernised weaving techniques as a metaphor for density. 

Each scenography will have a general theme which is revealed in four different exhibitions – similar to theatrical work – to showcase an important element of Bahrain’s culture and its rich heritage. 

They will shed light on general themes starting with the sea, weaving creativity, a narration of history and finally sustainable cities. 

You can visit the pavilion’s official website and follow the pavilion’s official accounts on Instagram and Facebook @BahPavilion. In the event of any inquiries or to request additional information regarding the Kingdom of Bahrain’s participation in Expo 2020 Dubai, the Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities can be reached through the following email: