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Ethiopia - Expo Osaka 1970

Ethiopia at the Exhibition Expo Osaka 1970
© Expo'70

Ethiopia presented the theme "Friendship Across Continents". Its pavilion, in the form of a cylindrical building and two traditional Ethiopian houses, or "tukuls", was partly made of bamboo woven on site by craftsmen from the Ethiopian province of Sidamo. Inside, the many facets of Ethiopian culture, development and progress were displayed.

Culture was the sign of the largest exhibition hall, where five major areas of the nation were represented. As you moved from one suspended platform to the next, you literally moved through the empire: from obelisks and the landscape of historic Aksum to a replica of Gondar Castle to the interior of a typical southern dwelling. A whitewashed stone church nestled in a cave in the mountains of Lalibela and a domed house in the port city of Massawa were included in this "tour of Ethiopia".

The first "tukul" was the Queen of Sheba's café where Ethiopian coffee, "supreme since the time of Sheba", was served. Outside, additional tables and hand-carved stools allowed guests to sit in the shade of the colourful umbrellas and talk with the young and beautiful Ethiopian girls who were on hand to serve them.

The second "tukul" house featured displays on industry and agriculture and areas of the pavilion where guests could talk to representatives of Ethiopian industry organisations. There was also a gift shop, selling Ethiopian crafts and souvenirs.

In addition, film and slide shows complemented the pavilion activities and provided a broader knowledge of this historic Ethiopian empire.