Author Archives: Stephanie

The Legacy of Modern Housing, part two

The Stran-Steel House at Chicago’s Century of Progress Exposition was unique primarily due to its steel frame.  The Stran-Steel Corporation used sheet steel rolled into studs, joists and plates instead of wood joists and 2x4s in their model home, but … Continue reading

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The Legacy of Modern Housing

While most of the buildings at all the fairs were designed and constructed to last only one season or two, many fair buildings—especially the model houses—had a lasting impression on fairgoers.  Designing Tomorrow curators have heard of many people who … Continue reading

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Fair Sites as Cultural Landscapes

Recently, Designing Tomorrow curators partnered with The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF) to provide information on the three still-existing sites where world’s fairs took place in the 1930s.  TCLF has a great program called “What’s Out There,” which is a database … Continue reading

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What made these fairs “international”?

If you come to view Designing Tomorrow at the National Building Museum, you will not see very many examples of international pavilions on display. So you may wonder, like other visitors before you, why some of the world’s fairs of … Continue reading

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The Middleton Family at the New York World’s Fair

For your entertainment over the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, we have a treat for you: the full version of Westinghouse’s promotional film “The Middleton Family at the New York World’s Fair”! In this video, you can see some of the spectacular … Continue reading

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Fantasy land in San Francisco

One of the most memorable features of the Golden Gate International Exposition on Treasure Island in San Francisco was its color.  Lush gardens of beautiful flowers and clever lighting effects on buildings and fountains made an impact on more than … Continue reading

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The eclectic modernism of the fairs

Designing Tomorrow co-curator Laura Schiavo has said that the exhibition contains a lot of information, but at its heart it really answers a few big questions: What did the “modern” world’s fair of the 1930s look like?   How was modernism … Continue reading

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