The Automatic Exhibition. The Czechoslovak pavilion at Expo 67 in Montreal

24 November 2017 - 18 March 2018

The Automatic Exhibition. The Czechoslovak pavilion at Expo 67 in Montreal

Place Brno, Museum of Applied Arts, Husova 14, CZECH REPUBLIC
Organizer Moravská galerie v Brně a GAVU Cheb / The Moravian Gallery in Brno and Fine Art Gallery (GAVU) in Cheb
More info

An Automat for an Exhibition will recall the second of the three post-war presentations of Czechoslovakia at the world's fairs. Expo 67 in Montreal took place half a century ago and with only a few material exhibits surviving, the exhibition concept combines a visual and an art-history section. The entry-level "black box" lets the spectators relive the aesthetic experience of the analogue audiovision, one of the technologically most advanced exhibits in the Czechoslovak pavilion which has been valued on an international scale to this day. The backlit tables will display the photographic documentation capturing the Expo 67 site, the Czechoslovak exhibition, the present-day state of the pavilion on the Canadian island of Newfoundland and photos from the first exhibition on Expo 67 held in 1968 as part of the International Biennial of Applied Graphics Brno dedicated to contemporary exhibition design. The second room will feature the artefacts, mostly sketches or models for works of art and the pavilion building; accompanied by sound interventions created by the exhibition's architect and artist Pavel Sterec, offering one of the possible interpretations of the exhibits.

The name of the project invokes a featured attraction in the pavilion, an interactive cinema called the Kinoautomat with live action by the actor Miroslav Horníček, but it mainly serves as a metaphor for the situation in which the Montreal participation became reality. After Expo 58 in Brussels Czechoslovak exhibition design established its position as a special discipline of architecture and the applied arts, and some authors even considered it a new medium in art. In its time, Expo 67 set the standard for the quality of exhibition design in Czechoslovakia, while it simultaneously became a symbol of a routine approach leading to the dilution of ideas.

A dedicated publication of the same name, which is the first monograph of the Czechoslovak pavilion at Expo 67, is published by GAVU Cheb and the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague. The authors of the texts - Terezie Nekvindová, Daniela Kramerová, Henrieta Moravčíková, Martin Strakoš, Martin Bernátek, Vladimíra Büngerová and Marta Sylvestrová - focused on critical evaluation of Czechoslovak participation through the prism of exhibition design, architecture, audio-visual exhibits and the issue of the Czech-Slovak relationship.

Co-organizer of the exhibition: Fine Art Gallery (GAVU) in Cheb and Slovak design center.