A film screening of “Modern Ruin: A World’s Fair Pavilion,” Matthew Silva’s documentary about an abandoned structure designed by modernist icon Philip Johnson for the 1964 World’s Fair.The film tells the story of the Pavilion from the glory days of the fair, through the years of neglect, up to present day advocacy.
The filmmakers hope this project will be the first step in engaging and informing people about the building in new and exciting ways. This whimsical, futuristic, and soaring structure, constructed for the 1964 World’s Fair in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens, has been left abandoned for the greater part of 50 years.
“It would be a shame if its story ended in demolition,” says producer Matthew Silva, “The dreamers see beyond the cracks, rust, and neglect to a thriving community space that will serve New Yorkers for generations.” The film’s goal is to contribute to the re-imagining of Flushing Meadows Corona Park and eventually lead to its re-purposing.
The New York State Pavilion’s abandoned observation decks and steel arena have inspired generations of New Yorkers who have grown up with this peculiar relic on the horizon. The Pavilion holds a great many surprises, and its best days may be yet to come.
The screening will be held at 6 pm on Tuesday, June 2 at The Paris Café, which first opened in 1873. This café was frequented by such personages as Thomas Edison and Theodore Roosevelt, and it nearly closed after sustaining damage from Superstorm Sandy. The Paris Café is located at 119 South Street (at Peck Slip), in Manhattan. Food and drinks will be available for purchase.
Photo below: view from the observation towers of the New York State Pavilion; the Unisphere is in the center, Shea Stadium at far background left.