2014 Events Celebrating the 1964 and 1939 World's Fairs
Announced by the World's Fair Anniversary Honorary Committee Co-Chairs: The Honorable Melinda Katz, Queens Borough President, and The Honorable Margaret Markey, NYS Assembly, Chairwoman of the Committee on Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Development.
The following events will take place anytime from May through September. For ongoing or permanent exhibits and others, click here.
July 25 to 27
World's Fair Play Festival, Queens Theatre, 14 United Nations Ave. S., Flushing
Queens Theatre has commissioned new plays from celebrated national, international and local playwrights to present 10 original, 10-minute plays inspired by the 1939 and 1964 World Fairs. Each work will "travel" among multiple performance spaces. $18. 2 pm, 3 pm, 8 pm. See website.
A Taste of Italy, Queens Historical Society, 143-35 37th Ave., Flushing
Come and enjoy the music, food & culture of Italy to give you an experience similar to walking through a World's Fair pavilion. You'll also be able to view the latest exhibition, Remembering Yesterday: Queens and Its World's Fairs, which takes a look at both the 1939 & 1964 World's Fairs held in Queens, NY. Tickets must be purchased in advance. See website.
Saturday, August 2
Bringing the World to the Fair: The Port Authority's Role — Trade, Travel and Tourism in Queens, the Region and the World, Queens Botanical Garden, 43-34 Main St., Flushing, NY 11355.
The Port Authority of NY & NJ's multi-media exhibit will be on view in the auditorium lobby through November 1, Tuesday through Sunday, 8 am to 6 pm, free with Queens Botanical Garden Admission. See website.
Wednesday, August 20
Movies in the Parks celebrates the 1964 World's Fair. Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. The NYC Parks Department hosts a free outdoor showing of the 1964 classic Mary Poppins at 111th Street Lawn area (between carousel and Playground for All Children) from 7 pm to 10pm.
Sunday-Monday, September 21-22
New York Hall of Science, 47-01 111th St, Corona, NY 11368.
The World Maker Faire returns to the New York Hall of Science for its fifth year, featuring more than 600 makers, inventors, artists and thinkers celebrating do-it-yourself creativity, innovation, and community.
Sunday, September 28
World's Fair Lecture by Margaret Anne Tockarshewsky, Executive Director of the New Haven Museum, Queens Botanical Garden, 43-50 Main St, Flushing, NY 11355, 2 pm, free with Queens Botanical Garden Admission.
Sunday, October 5
That Kodak Moment: Picturing the Fairs in 1939-40 and 1964-65, Queens Museum, New York City Building, Flushing, NY 11368.
From Weegee to Margaret Bourke-White, professional photographers have long been entranced with the spectacle and allure of world's fairs and expositions. The Eastman Kodak pavilion figured prominently in both fairs, making the science of picture-taking accessible and relatively inexpensive to the typical fairgoer through new technologies in film and camera design. Inspired by a recent donation of over 1,500 medium format images of the 1964 World Fair, this exhibition will include never-before-revealed works from the museum collection, ranging from documentation by professionals to snapshots and individualized scrapbooks created by amateur fair viewers. Photographers include Julien Levy, Luis Marquez, Stephen Levine, Bob Golby, Jerry Kean, Van Williams, Fred Tannery and Alex Siodmak, as well as a host of unknown enthusiastic visitors. Runs through January 4, 2015.
Ambassador Satchmo at the World's Fair, co-organized by the Louis Armstrong House Museum and hosted at the Queens Museum. The exhibit includes a series of rare photographs taken by Armstrong's close friend and personal photographer, Jack Bradley. June 30, 1964 was declared "Louis Armstrong Day" by the World's Fair in honor of Pops and these photos capture Armstrong that day. This series of photos has never been published until now. Runs through Sept. 14. See website.
Remembering Yesterday: Queens and Its NY World's Fairs, Queens Historical Society, 143-35 37th Ave., Flushing, 11354. Exhibition on the two World Fairs from the perspective of the common visitor—often a child—through artifacts and photographs drawn from the collections of people—now adults—who attended the fairs and fondly recall them. Open Tuesdays, Saturdays and Sundays, runs through May 31, 2015, free with Queens Historical Society admission. See website.
Science and the Fairs at New York Hall of Science is a collaboration with The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey and the Queens Historical Society. Science was a critical topic at both World Fair. A varying mixture of science, technology, education and entertainment were presented in the context of economic depression and imminent war (1939 World Fair) and economic prosperity and the real threat of nuclear war (1964 World Fair). These social and political settings conditioned the perception of the role of science in society and the world. Runs through October 16, free with admission.
The Bridge and the Fair, Queens Public Library, Whitestone Branch. 151-10 14th Rd. Organized by the Queens Historical Society. A photo exhibition for the 75th anniversary of the opening of The Bronx–Whitestone Bridge. This bridge, as well as the Whitestone Expressway and Flushing Bridge, brought visitors directly and quickly to the 1939 World Fair and provided the Northern Gateway to Queens. Monday through Friday. Free.
Bundith Phunsombatlert's Wayfinding: 100 NYC Public Sculptures at Queens Museum is a site-specific project that guides viewers without the need for travel or motion, and questions how a journey within a specific geographic sphere can be a work of art in itself. The installation is composed of 100 directional signs, each with a drawing of a public sculpture in NYC and the distance (mapped with GPS coordinates) between the source- sculpture and the sign. Viewers participate in this project by experiencing each sculpture, whether through the original works or their representational drawn counterparts, calling attention to the very specific, transformative space between object and audience. Runs through November 15. See website.
The World Comes to Queens: Films from the 1939 and 1964 World Fairs, Museum of the Moving Image, 36-01 35th Avenue, Astoria, NY 11106.
The museum will continuously show WF-related films, in excerpts or their entirety, including The Middleton Family at the New York World's Fair and To New Horizons from 1939, and Sinclair at the World's Fair, World's Fair Report with Lowell Thomas, To The Fair, and Unisphere: The Biggest World on Earth from 1964. Runs through August 31. See website.
Moving the World to the 1964 World's Fair
Starting May 12, a photo exhibit will be on display at the AirTrain JFK Jamaica and Howard Beach Stations until November 12.
Science and the Fair Exhibit, New York Hall of Science. 47-01 111th St, Corona, NY 11368. Free with NYSCI admission. Throughout the month of June.
The Designing Eye: Exposition Posters from 1893 – 2000, on loan from a private collection, at the Queens Museum, Flushing Meadows Corona Park. Exhibiting 30 WF posters from a 100-year period and spanning several continents. Runs through August 31
Photo exhibit, Holiday Inn Long Island City/Manhattan View. 39-05 29th St, Long Island City, NY 11101. Throughout the month of July.
Masons at the Fair, LaGuardia Plaza New York, 104-04 Ditmars Blvd., East Elmhurst, NY 11369. Sponsored by the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey and the Queens Historical Society, this exhibit contains photos of the Grand Lodge of Masons and the Masonic Brotherhood Center pavilion at the 1964 World's Fair. Through Labor Day.
64 in 64, organized by the Queens Historical Society, at Queens Theatre, Flushing Meadows Corona Park Sixty four photographs documenting the construction of the iconic New York State Pavilion which consisted of Theaterama (today's Queens Theatre), the Tent of Tomorrow and three Observation Towers. Runs through November 2, open on Mondays from 11 am to 2 pm and Tuesdays through Sundays, 10 am to 6 pm. Free.
Iconic Symbols of the 1964 World's Fair Reimagined — in LEGOs, Queens Theatre, 14 United Nations Avenue South, Flushing NY 11368. Fun exhibit of seven World's Fair structures made out of LEGOs, organized in association with The Port Authority of NY & NJ, commissioned Brick by Brick – World's Fair Brick Committee, led by Expert LEGO Builder Cody Wells. Runs through November 2.
Bringing the World to the Fair: The Port Authority's Role — Trade, Travel and Tourism in Queens, the Region and the World, Queens Theatre, 14 United Nations Avenue South, Flushing NY 11368. Exhibit including a pop up, display case and video, sponsored by The Port Authority of NY & NJ. Runs through July 31. Open on Mondays, 10 am to 2 pm, and Tuesdays through Sundays, 10 am to 6 pm. Free.
Andy Warhol's 13 Most Wanted Men and the 1964 World's Fair Exhibit, Queens Museum, Flushing Meadows Corona Park. Warhol's 13 Most Wanted Men exhibit sparked a high-profile scandal at the 1964 WF. As part of a prominent set of public commissions for the New York State Pavilion's exterior, Warhol enlarged mug shots from an NYPD booklet featuring the 13 most wanted criminals of 1962. Tiled together into a square, creating a chessboard of front and profile views of fugitives who were at large at the time, the work was installed by April 15, 1964 – and painted over with silver paint a few days later. When the WF opened to the public, all that was visible was a large silver square. Later in summer 1964, Warhol produced 20 Most Wanted Men paintings with the screens he had used to make the mural. These works will form the core of this year's exhibition, developed collaboratively by QM and The Andy Warhol Museum, open Wednesday through Sunday, noon to 6 pm, runs through September 7, free with QM admission. See website.
Mathematica: A World of Numbers, New York Hall of Science, 47-01 111th Street, Corona, NY 11368. Produced by legendary designers Charles and Ray Eames and designed originally for the California Museum of Science and Industry, a copy of the exhibition was displayed at the 1964 World Fair. The Hall of Science now owns the original version of the interactive exhibition, and it is on display every day and is free with admission. See website.
World's Fair Visible Storage and ChronoLeap: The Great World's Fair Adventure. Queens Museum, New York City Building, Flushing Meadows Corona Park, NY 11368. The Queens Museum will always be inextricably linked to the 1939 and 1964 World Fairs, and with a collection of more than 10,000 objects pertaining to the two expositions, the museum is a key resource to scholars and fans. In an effort to provide visitors with a greater understanding of the scope of the museum's enormous holdings of World Fair artifacts and memorabilia, the newly installed World's Fair Visible Storage and Gallery on the second floor displays more than 900 three-dimensional pieces arranged by date, and within these categories, arranged by donor. Also on view within the World's Fair Gallery is ChronoLeap: The Great World's Fair Adventure, a virtual experience and game that transports visitors back in time to the 1964 World Fair, which offered a glimpse of the future with different pavilions showcasing the latest innovations in science and technology as an avenue for better lifestyles. ChronoLeap allows for a virtual experience of the Fair, complete with pavilion tours and a conversation with World Fair President Robert Moses. See website.
Patent Holder: Noguchi, World's Fairs, and the Culture of Innovation. The Noguchi Museum, 9-01 33rd Rd, New York, NY 11106. The museum exhibits how Isamu Noguchi secured a commission with the Ford Motor Company for the 1939 World Fair. His Chassis Fountain, an abstract arrangement of elements from the engine, steering column and axle from a Ford in magnetite, an industrial cement compound the LIC-based artist would later use in his early experiments with light sculptures. This small exhibition tracks the nearly symbiotic relationship in Noguchi's work with sculpture and design in the years surrounding the 1939 World Fair. Runs through September 21.
The Panorama of the City of New York, Queens Museum, New York City Building, Flushing Meadows Corona Park, NY 11368. It is the jewel in the crown of the collection of the Queens Museum and a locus of memory for visitors from all over the globe. Conceived as a celebration of NYC's municipal infrastructure by urban mastermind and World Fair President Robert Moses for the 1964 World Fair, the Panorama was built by a team of more than 100 people working for the great architectural model makers Raymond Lester & Associates over the course of three years. The New York City Water System Model is an example of the use of models to inspire people about the grandness and complexity of NYC. (Another is the Panorama of the City of New York.) Displayed together under one roof, these models invite New Yorkers to consider the vital and inseparable role that water plays in our individual and collective urban lives. These models represent the museum's close ties to the history of this building and this park, as well as to NYC. The NYC Department of Environmental Protection will celebrate the 75th anniversary of model with a series of tours throughout the summer. See website.
New York Hall of Science, 47-01 111th St, Corona, NY 11368. The New York Hall of Science's iconic Great Hall, one of the last remaining structures from the 1964 World Fair, reopens following an extensive renovation and modernization. Featured in the Great Hall will be a new permanent exhibition, Connected Worlds, which explores how humans share and conserve resources on a planet that continually becomes more interconnected and interdependent.
Queens Museum and Museum of the City of New York are tracing the evolution of the Worlds Fairs from construction and promotion to execution. Unique objects and anniversary highlights will be shared weekly at New York World's Fair Collections Tumblr.