The Seed Cathedral by Thomas Heatherwick

This porcupine of a building was in fact the British pavillon at Expo 2010 Shanghai China. Known as the Seed Cathedral, the structure consisted of more than 60,000 transparent rods, each encasing one or more seeds from China’s Kunming Institute of Botany.

Famed British designer Thomas Heatherwick conceived the walk-in castle as a fiber-optic celebration of nature, illuminated by sunlight and glow at night while the rods swayed with the breeze.

After the expo closed last fall, the castle was dismantled, but its legacy lives on. The rods, each showing life’s potential, were distributed to schools across China and the United Kingdom.