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Rural Centre - Expo Paris 1937

Rural Centre at the Exhibition Expo Paris 1937
© H. Chipault
Architect(s) : Lecomte, Metz, Japy, Hennequin, Martineau et Guimpel

The Rural Centre consisted of a real village square with its school, its town hall and its great hall, a pleasant achievement of the architects: The architects were Messrs Lecomte, Metz, Japy, Hennequin, Martineau and Guimpel.

In this grouping, you could see the principles defined for Rural Housing put into practice.

The cooperatives gave you the opportunity to see their efforts in the Pavilions of the Dairy Cooperative, the Fruit Cooperative, the Wine Cooperative and the Cooperative Silo.

In the same row, a tasting centre presented their different products in appropriate packaging.

A large hall was used for temporary exhibitions of agricultural products and machinery and for animal shows.

In the square surrounded by the pavilions, there was also the Farmers' House, which housed the headquarters of the professional unions and in which a room was set up as a propaganda cinema, and the Agricultural Worker's Housing with its outbuildings.

The Social Services were adjacent to the School. They included a dispensary, a public bath and shower facility, a model fire station and a rural post office open to the public.

In the Cité des Métiers et de l'Artisanat (City of Trades and Crafts), grouped around a sumptuous palace, twenty-two craftsmen's houses, each housing a trade.

These houses - the glassmaker's house, topped by three large glass balls where the sun and the light played, the engraver's house, the cabinetmaker's house, the ceramist's house, the potter's house, the printer's house, the blacksmith's house - had been built with a demonstrative aim.

You could see the craftsman "working" in his own environment, which corresponded to his work and comfort needs.

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