Monday, June 25, 2007

from the PQ

I spent the first part of last week at the Industrial Palace for the Prague Quadrennial Exhibition, which was massive in size and scope, but strangely disappointing when it came to actual design.

11th International Exhibition of Scenography and Theatre Architecture(the exhibition hall in the Industrial Palace)

There was an overwhelming amount of stuff on show; some great, some good and some quite mediocre. Each country had its own themed exhibition space. New Zealand's was actually inflatable, which is no wonder as it was designed by this woman:

Yes, her hair does actually come to a point several inches above her head. I saw her in person and can attest to the fact that she does indeed style it like this every day.

There were some things I loved. Latvia's space had lightboxes with images of Monika Pormale's hyper-real performance spaces...

..and the Czech Republic entry was my absolute favorite. The Forman Brothers designed a self-contained fairground space with a sloth puppet operated by pulleys, a booth where disembodied hands painted your face, the world's tiniest ghost train (in which you had to pretend to be the size of an insect and were attacked by a bird), a band of musician bears you could operate yourself, and a heartbreaking little puppet lounge singer in a booth with her very own tiny band..

exit for the insect ghost train

handpainted sign for the musical bears

the face painting booth

The Forman Bros. were also responsible for the Mystery Boat, which could be animated via a series of levers, buttons and pulleys:

More pics from the exhibition (click pictures for larger images):

a costume from the student exhibition

Iceland's exhibition space

Bulgaria's little automata tent

a Quay-esque moving box in the student exhibition

a pleasing row of teabags

from the Russian students' exhibition

disconcerting Israeli puppets

costumes from Taiwan

tiny deck chairs

costume design for The Birds, schools exhibition

sketches from Ireland


M said...

These pictures are fantastic. I wish I had known about this. I'm in Hungary right now, so Prague isn't to hard to get to. Do you know how long this Industrial Palace is going to be up for? Maybe I can still go see it! The Bulgarian exhibit especially intrigues me. Is it as cool as your picture made it look?

Lovely general Prague pictures as well. You've made me very excited to visit.

Crista Noel Smith said...

I'm glad you liked the pictures. The Bulgarian tent was very small, but lovely. I think the exhibition is over but Prague is definitely still worth a visit.