An Encyclopedic Photographic Memory of Ephemera

New York World's Fair book illustration, 1964

I enjoy accusing others of illiteracy. “Don’t you people read?” I ask my students. “If you’d read the copy, you’d understand why the image works,” I say to clients, but in a nicer way. “For the love of God put down that iPhone and get a book,” I tell my niece and nephews. Then I find I am as guilty of the same sin.

I have a book about the 1964 World’s Fair. I’ve never read it. I do, however, know each and every illustration, color palette, and photograph in the book. Who knows what it is about? I’m too distracted by the tiny drawings on divider pages. To make matters worse, I deconstruct the meaning of the imagery. And I make odd connections that require an encyclopedic photographic memory of ephemera. Fortunately, I have this. For example, the overview of the Fair is surprisingly similar to the layout of Epcot, which is a sort of permanent world’s fair (or beer walk, depending on your interest.) Finally, the color palette for the fair preview images is exactly the same as the preview book for Walt Disney World, published a few years later. Coincidence? You be the judge.

New York World's Fair book map illustration, 1964

 

New York World's Fair book, illustration, 1964

 

New York World's Fair book, illustration, 1964

 

New York World's Fair book, illustration, 1964

 

New York World's Fair book, illustration, 1964

 

New York World's Fair book, illustration, 1964

 

New York World's Fair overview 1964

 

Epcot, from above, via Google Earth

 

New York World's Fair book, illustration, 1964

 

Walt Disney World Preview Book, 1970

FacebookTwitterTumblrGoogle+PinterestShare This Story

Tags: , , , ,

One Response to “An Encyclopedic Photographic Memory of Ephemera”

  1. nancy armitage Says:

    very interesting color and your comparisons.they remind me of my teachers at art center work berynice polifka and her husband gen fluery. you crack me up with the distraction of ephemera…me too i loved this old set of encyclopia, on the color front page there were like still life assemblage of everything with the letter” a” or” b”. i could look at those things for hours and my moms mccalls cookbook with line drawings of the ingredients of the recipe like the suger and spices and the like. i would love to find these at a used book store….and found out who the artists illustrators were.