A. S. B. L. Atomium

Atomium Brussels 58

  •  Original pamphlet on the Atomium published for visitors to the 1958 Brussels World’s Fair.

    The Atomium was designed to promote the peaceful applications of atomic age science during the 1958 World’s Fair. The 120-meter-tall structure is a replica of an iron crystal magnified to 165 billion times its actual size. Six of the “atoms” were open to the public, with two containing restaurants and viewing windows and four hosting exhibits. “While the non-profit organization Atomium had originally invited the ‘big four’ of contemporary nuclear research - USA, USSR, France, and the UK - to demonstrate their know-how in the Atomium, they rejected the offer in favor of the exhibits of their nation’s pavilions and of the International Hall of Science. Eventually, the Atomium’s international Atom=Hope exposition showcased atomic research in Belgium, Germany, and Italy as well as the research of private companies such as Westinghouse, SORIN, AGIP, Sylvania, and EKLA” (Devos, et al, Architecture of Great Expositions 1937-1959, p. 139). Though the Atomium was intended to be a temporary structure, its popularity with the public ensured its survival, and today it is still a top tourist attraction.

    This pamphlet provides a cut-through visualisation of the Atomium showing visitors how they could proceed through the structure and where the various exhibits were located, and proudly gives the building’s size and structural features. Along the lower edge five photographs show a panorama of the view outside the structure. Photos on the back show the Atomium under construction, and one graphic provides a size comparison with the Gothic Brussels Town Hall.

  • Brussels: A. S. B. L. Atomium, 1958. Pamphlet comprising a single sheet folded twice. Very lightly rubbed at the extremities. Excellent, fresh condition.

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