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BIG Architects (Bjarke Ingels Group) (Denmark)

Bjarke Ingels is principal of BIG, based in Copenhagen. An alumnus of Rem Koolhaas' OMA practice, Ingels takes a similar approach: experimenting with pure space, but never losing sight of the building as a solution to a real-world problem. His manifesto "Yes Is More" takes the form of a giant cartoon strip, 130 meters long, that reminds people to keep thinking big -- to see all our modern problems as challenges that inspire us.

His deeply-thought-out and often rather large works -- including several skyscrapers and mixed-use projects in a developing section of Copenhagen, plus a project for a new commercial harbor-island -- work to bring coherence to the urban fabric and to help their occupants and users lead better lives. Coming up, he's designing the Danish Pavilion for Expo 2010 in Shanghai. The pavilion is described as "a loop, a velodrome and an interactive fairytale,"and -- not surprisingly for a Dane -- comes with 1,500 bikes that Expo visitors can borrow.