Saturday, January 5, 2008

The Man the Provider Complex

Nine pavilions located on the eastern point of Île Notre-Dame sought to explore the theme of agriculture at Expo 67. The pie-shaped pavilion complex spanned 7 acres in an atmosphere of rural tranquility. Despite the quiet appearance, Man the Provider raised some frightening issues concerning the earth's population explosion and undernourishment in underdevelopped countries...

The first pavilion contained a large clock that counted off the seconds, reminding visitors that each tick equalled 2 new mouths to be fed. Scenes of hunger in the world were projected on 8 screens.

The second pavilion retraced how mankind had learned over the centuries to adapt the powerful forces of nature to his will, as well as using animals for food and service.

The third and fourth pavilions reminded visitors that only 3% of the world's surface could be cultivated, the rest being desert, mountain, ice or water. Efforts to improve the earth's productivity were discussed in displays.

The fifth pavilion drew the visitor's attention to the paradox of modern agriculture existing side by side with hunger and undernourishment.

The sixth pavilion displayed modern agricultural machinery: mechanical giants that were invaluable to the modern farmer.

The last 3 pavilions were devoted to the latest methods of poultry farming, livestock breeding and milk production.

Finally, a fairytail farm and animal show was presented to the delight of children of all ages.

The show's first trick was a hen that did math: the emcee (one of the pavilion's guides) would ask an audience member to give her a math problem to solve. Amazingly, she would get it right as long as the answer was less than 10. The grand finale was the hen that danced while a rabbit accompanied her on piano!

In addition, between-shows featured a duck, a rabbit, a hen, and a dove.

images: (1-2) library and archives Canada
(4-5-6) personal collection

No comments:

Post a Comment