Architecture to instruct and delight : a socio-historical analysis of the world exhibiiton as a didactic phenomenon (1798-1851-1970)

Architecture of Instruction and Delight is the outcome of a postgraduate research project at Delft University of Technology performed by the author. It deals with the genesis and development of the nineteenth and twentieth century World Exhibition as a didactic phenomenon. Architecture – and later urbanism – played a key instrumental role in it. Van Wesemael interprets the World Exhibition primarily as an integrated didactic ideological strategy, popularly conveyed by a mixture of media such as exhibitions, competitions, ceremonies and lectures. A brief introductory genealogy of the concept of national industrial exhibitions, precursors of the current World Exhibition, is followed by five chapters in which the didactics of five discernible periods is analysed using noteworthy examples: ’The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations’ of 1851 in London, the ’Exposition Universelle’ of 1867 in Paris, the ’Exposition Universelle et Internationale’ of 1900 also in Paris, the ’World’s Fair’ of 1939 in New York and the ‘Expo’ of 1970 in Osaka. The book makes abundant use of historical sources.

Text: van Wesemael Pieter. pp. 848; paperback. Publisher: 010 Publishers, Rotterdam, 1999.

ISBN: 9789064503832| 9064503834
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Architecture of Instruction and Delight is the outcome of a postgraduate research project at Delft University of Technology performed by the author. It deals with the genesis and development of the nineteenth and twentieth century World Exhibition as a didactic phenomenon. Architecture – and later urbanism – played a key instrumental role in it. Van Wesemael interprets the World Exhibition primarily as an integrated didactic ideological strategy, popularly conveyed by a mixture of media such as exhibitions, competitions, ceremonies and lectures. A brief introductory genealogy of the concept of national industrial exhibitions, precursors of the current World Exhibition, is followed by five chapters in which the didactics of five discernible periods is analysed using noteworthy examples: ’The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations’ of 1851 in London, the ’Exposition Universelle’ of 1867 in Paris, the ’Exposition Universelle et Internationale’ of 1900 also in Paris, the ’World’s Fair’ of 1939 in New York and the ‘Expo’ of 1970 in Osaka. The book makes abundant use of historical sources.

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