International Exhibition of Arts and Techniques in Modern Life in Paris 1937

Arts and techniques applied to modern life

May 25, 1937 - November 25, 1937

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Indochina at the Exhibition Expo Paris 1937

© Lynx

Architect(s) : Sabrié

The tip of the Ile des Cygnes was occupied by the Indochina pavilion, the picturesque ensemble of which had been put together under the direction of Mr. Sabrie.

Here, as in the other parts devoted to our overseas France, the extremely lively presentation had a strictly indigenous craft character.

The workers occupied stalls identical to those they had at home. The small reconstructed houses were reminiscent of those in the indigenous quarters of various centres in the Indochinese Union.

Just as in the streets of Cotton, Hemp, Silk, Rice, Cups of Hanoi, you could see the embroiderers on loom, the leather tailors, the hammerers of silver, copper, gold. Other modest artists carved wood; ivory was fashioned there as in Saigon.

The Cambodians made the wonderful silver objects and the "sampots", magnificent silk fabrics with witty designs, before your eyes.

In the centre of this settlement stood a motif whose purpose was purely decorative. No archaeological reconstruction.

On a cruciform plan, a composition was inspired by the different monuments of Angkor. The square pillar-columns were like those found at Angkor Wat, Prah Khan and Bapnon. The upper part was adorned with the civic figures of the Bayon, the centre of the Kmer world in the 10th century.

As much as possible, the interior and exterior projections were used. In the exhibition galleries, all the works of the indigenous art schools of our great colony were presented. A frieze executed by the students of the Hanoi School of Fine Arts decorated these galleries.

Restaurants served the natives their usual food and you could see them eating in small saucers and tiny cups, very aromatic dishes, like those served in front of the street vendors of soup from the Far East.

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