Monday, September 21, 2009

Progressland and More! August 1964

Four from the Fair!

Let's begin with this swell photo of General Electric's beautiful "Progressland" pavilion, constructed with "... a unique lamella pipe dome springing from a compression ring girder at the third level." But you can tell that just from looking, can't you? And in case you didn't already know, at night the dome performed an ever-changing light show that made it appear to rotate. Whoo-ee boy, I tell ya! And of course it also contained Walt Disney's "Carousel of Progress", among other wonders to behold.


The photo is dark and moody, but you can still make out the "Autoparts Harmonic Orchestra". Made up of various bits of automobiles, this "orchestra" performed (sans musicians) a tune that only its mother could love. There is something so wonderfully goofy and unexpected about this idea, and very "Disney" somehow.


Taken from the "Better Living Center", we can see much of the Fair, including Pepsi Cola and Unicef's "It's a Small World" in the foreground. There's the Tower of the Four Winds. Beyond that is the Eastman Kodak pavilion with it's undulating "moon roof" and gigantic photo prints (changed regularly to keep things interesting).


This is another dark one, showing the exterior of General Motors' "Futurama". The curving, concave facade looms over the guests; it actually feels a bit ominous, though maybe it's just the lighting.

7 comments:

Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

Great set from the fair, the one taken from the "better Living Center" is extra fun. The Kodak pavilion is so cool with its moon roof and huge photos - can I get enlargements printed in that size? The "official guide books & maps" sign in the GM photo looks like Wally Crump designed it!

Chris Merritt said...

Auto parts Harmonic - in COLOR! Awesome. All Crump-creations should be seen in color...

George Taylor said...

Major,

All of those shota are fantastic! Especially the AHO!

Anonymous said...

That cello looks like it has eyes. Like the chair in the haunted mansion.

Eric

Jim said...

According to my Official Guide to the NYWF ($1 cover price) Welton Becket was the architect of record for the GE pavilion and also contributed the entries for the Coca-Cola and Ford pavilions as well.
I believe the firm was subsequently hired by WED to provide the design of the GE Carousel of Progress building at Tommorrowland '67 sans dome.

Nancy said...

these are great, Major :)

i was just going to ask about the domed building and whether or not it came to Disneyland along with the Carousel of Progress...i wonder what happened to it (if anything)?

Major Pepperidge said...

Nancy, I can only assume that the Progressland building met with wrecking balls and bulldozers just like most of the rest of the Fair. Hard to believe! But it's gone.