This was the Future, Vol.20

typed for your pleasure on 22 December 2005, at 11.23 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Mile end’ by Pulp

On my inevitable headstone — a three-inch thick slab of moulded smoke-coloured perspex with chrome highlights, flanked by angelic figures carved in the likenesses of Twiggy and Peggy Moffitt — the inscription will read,


Well, probably not. But it is a statement based on fact, as evidenced by this latest instalment of ‘This was the Future’. Tonight! We peer intently at Expo 67, held in Montreal, Canada!

the Katimavik, Canadian Pavilion

Visitors could climb onto the gigantic Katimavik via a series of stairs including the final open one that cut diagonally up to the topmost perimeter of the inverted pyramid (an elevator for the elderly and handicapped). Inside a display of unusual “sculptures” was fixed to the four sloping sides. Many of them moved while eerie electronic music accompanied the sculpture’s movement in an odd dance of dance and movement. [..] The view of Expo from the Katimavik’s 109 foot high top was spectacular. Below, beside the Katimavik was the six story high abstract People Tree. Its brilliant red and orange nylon “maple leaves” were actually hundreds of color photographs depicting Canadians at work and leisure. At night they turned incandescent under floodlights.
taken from this site

It being an expo, the Katimavik wasn’t the only building with a fab design. The German Pavilion was a giant white-tent-with-metal-exoskeleton affair, Great Britain’s entry was an enormous white Brutalist slab, which somewhat echoed their castles and the idea of Albion, and the United states had a vast geodesic dome designed by the inimitable Buckminster Fuller. And, of course, some of the more astute fans of the ‘This was the Future’ series will remember that Expo 67 also was home to Moshe Safdie’s unique Habitat 67, appropriately enough.

I also think one of the reasons I dig Expos of the Sixties variety, is due to a lot of the overreaching Space-age names that the places and the buildings received. The Gyrotron! The Magnasphere! The Ultravex! The Panheligate! The Supertropophone! Fantastic, on so many levels

Random similar posts, for more timewasting:

This was Glorious Future, Vol.15 on August 15th, 2005

This was the Future, Vol.23 on March 18th, 2006

5 have spoken to “This was the Future, Vol.20”

  1. SafeTinspector writes:

    I love this word, although it sounds like a music instrument name more than a structure. What does the “tropo” part mean?

    Mod stuff was good stuff. Optimizm and cleanliness, no knowledge of global warming or AIDS.
    Too bad there were still so many dicks…. I guess we have different dicks, but dicks still.

  2. Davecat writes:

    Yeah, unfortunately, dicks are eternal. I’m sure there’s a porn film with that title out there somewhere. 😐

    And the ‘tropo’ part of ‘Supertropophone’ stands for, err, ‘tropical’. As in fish. Yes.
    To be honest, I made those names up. Well, all except for one of them. If you can suss which one is the real one, I will send you a picture of a bunny.

  3. SafeTinspector writes:


    Panheligate seems to be absent from any current Google indexing.


  4. SafeTinspector writes:

    Where’s my damn bunny?!?

  5. Scarlett writes:

    Nice article though it was a long time go I still enjoyed reading it

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