2009-11-23

USSR at the 1958 World's Fair in Brussels

© Original Diapositive Kodachromes Fabriqué en France

The monumental Russian pavilion from 1958 as seen from the United States; the Saudi-Arabian/UAR/Arab Federation pavilion can be seen on the right. Measuring 500 by 240 feet wide, the USSR pavilion was created so that the outer walls were suspended by cables attached to eight pairs of steel supports. Impressive and sturdy, the central themes were technology, industry and transportation.

The impressive entrance hall. This could be seen as the start of the cold war between Russia and America, or at the least, the beginning of the space race. One of the main features in this area was the Sputnik satellite, seen above and below. Launched in October 1957, the little beach-ball-sized satellite really caused a chain of events in America. In July 1958, Congress passed the National Aeronautics and Space Act (commonly called the "Space Act"), which created NASA. In fact, look at the US pavilion 6 years later at the '64 World's Fair - it is almost entirely space-related.

Sputnik display and some other machinery (high-tech in 1958, no doubt.)

He's so big, he's got to be great. Where is this statue today?

I love this populist mural depicting patriotism. When other countries do this, we call it propaganda.

I think this has something to do with polar exploration and ice-breaking technologies.

A group of nuns pass by a display of Russian textiles.

More "industry." My guess is these are state of the art electric drills. (I don't have good literature on this fair, and the official guide book is very brief and poorly translated.)

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