Where’s the Portuguese Pavilion?

One thing we can say about the Portuguese pavilion: it’s really corky.

The Shanghai World Expo 2010 will open its doors in just a couple of weeks. Dozens of international pavilions are rushing through the final stages of construction and, as expected, news and images are being revealed all over the web – just take a look at ArchDaily to get the idea. And still, 15 days to go, this is the only image we can find regarding the design of the Portuguese pavilion.
The official website of the Portuguese participation does offer a glimpse into the ideas and themes that served as inspiration for its design – a public space of urban expression, referenced in the most iconic plaza of the city of Lisbon, the Praça do Comércio. When it comes to the architecture of the pavilion, however, the information is lacklustre to say the least. Besides the cork covered façade, reflecting the mandatory sustainable significance that fits well with the exhibition’s guiding principles, there’s not much to seduce the unsuspecting visitor. The unadorned programmatic description doesn’t help either. This is the kind of event that would justify greater vision and flamboyance, merging architecture with a deeper sense of storytelling. Considering the long historical relationship between Portugal and China, and the many ways in which online platforms can be used to promote such event, there’s just not enough to catch the fancy of potential visitors into a desirably memorable experience. And when that happens, people tend to move on.

UPDATE: There's an alternate image available, apparently. It's the same as the first one, it just has a little more bling.