Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Expo '67, US Pavilion

Today I'm featuring some photos of the United States Pavilion from Montreal's "EXPO '67".

This geodesic dome was designed by none other than Buckminster Fuller. It measured 250 feet in diameter, and was 20 stories tall. I wonder if any of them were scary stories? To the right you can see the wing-like U.S.S.R. pavilion, which was the most popular at the fair. The US Pavilion was only the third most popular. I blame myself.

Here's another nice shot, with the "Minirail" in the foreground. The Minirail passed right through the dome of the US Pavilion, providing riders with a preview of what was inside. Kind of like the Peoplemover at Disneyland, oui?

Inside the impressive dome, there were "six levels of exhibits, connected by escalators ...based on the theme of: "Creative America - the positive use of creative energy". The exhibits included everything from American Folk Art and Elvis Presley's guitar to NASA’s Apollo Space Capsule and Lunar Excursion Module." I would have loved it!

Apparently the pavilion was rather popular with everyone except Americans! They thought that the exhibits gave the impression that the US was all about movies, crazy Pop Art (Warhol, Lichtenstein, etc), toys, rock and roll, and other things that seemed frivolous.

The next time we visit Expo '67, we'll see some of what was inside the dome!


Chiana_Chat said...

"Apparently the pavilion was rather popular with everyone except Americans!"

Gosh you mean the mass media hadn't won yet? Good for the people of '67.

Looking forwards to a peek inside the original giant golf ball!

Brianna said...

Did you just mean all Americans? I think you are wrong maybe few but not all. I think the pavilion symbolizes talents, great ideas etc. Anyway, great blog, and the information are quite interesting. I will be back for another read for sure.

Connie Moreno said...

"I wonder if any of them were scary stories?"

OMG, dude you are insane :-)

JG said...

Great post Major.

I saw a presentation by Fuller once, many years ago. He was an absolute LIVE WIRE. He wore heavy glasses with a big band behind because he moved so fast, the glasses would fly off of his head otherwise. One in a hundred million, that guy.

Awesome pictures, esp. that last one.

I miss the days of bravado architecture. All the stuff we get today is sissy stuff, afraid of "hurting" the environment. Nonsense, real architecture was strong, courageous and in harmony with the world.

Especially if it had chocolate cookies embedded in the roof.


Nancy said...

sooo cool....very Logan's Run! :D

seems i have solved the mystery, David...i am logged into my gmail at the moment...hmmm

who cares...IM BACK!

walterworld said...

Glad to see that the geodesic dome still stands and is now known as the 'Bioshpere'..

Anonymous said...

I have pleasent memories of Expo; and the US pavilion was very nice. The USSR pavilion seemed so menacing it made it much more of an exiciting place.

Anonymous said...

"scary stories"? not unless your bothered by that little erupting into flames thang.

Anonymous said...

Hi. The picture that shows the US pavilion and the combined (Yellow, Blue) Minirail station doesn't come up on your page, nor does any means of clicking on it to view it. You might want to see if it's link is broken.

Major Pepperidge said...

Anonymous, the link works fine for me... wait a while and try it again, maybe?

Anonymous said...

I remember passing through the US Pavilion as an 8 year old while it was raining. Water poured down from leaks above and everyone was happily dodging the streams as they walked about. Otherwise it was very futuristic. As kids we thought it was preview of living in a futuristic space age. I miss the excitement and optimism that was everywhere at Expo 67.

Major Pepperidge said...

Anonymous, thanks for sharing that fun memory… I never knew that the building leaked so badly! Wish I could have seen it for myself.