Universal exposition or world expo is one of the largest public exhibitions that have been held from mid nineteenth century in different part of the world. Prince Albert, Queen Victoria's husband was the first to introduce the idea of a Great Exhibition of the manufactured goods from around the world. This Great Exhibition or the World Fair was first held in the year 1851 at The Crystal Palace in Hyde Park in London under the title Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of all Nation. International trade, art and design education and even tourism have been highly influenced by these World Fares.
The first World Expo ever, was held at the Hyde Park, London. The Crystal palace designed by Sir Joseph Paxton was set up in 9 acres of the park at astonishing speed (within a year) just for the purpose of this great exhibition. The crystal palace which housed the first world exposition is a huge iron goliath with millions of feet of glasses.
On the opening day, more than 20,000 people visited this great fare and in the month that followed over 600,000 from different regions and class had visited it. The world expo held at the Crystal park had over 13000 exhibits were from different parts of the world was sheltered under the single roof of the crystal palace. The exhibits and items like kitchen appliances, tools steel making display and many more from different parts of the world were diverse, beautiful and innovative at the same time. This exhibition was enjoyed by millions of rich and the poor people in the period from May to October 1851.
Since the start of the World Expo in the mid nineteenth century many expositions were held at different part of the world and these can be distinguished less than three eras: the era of Industrialization, the era of Cultural Exchange and the era of Nation Branding.
The first era, the era of industrialization was recognized from the first exhibition at the crystal palace in 1851 to the year 1938. In these years, the exposition mainly focused on trade of technological inventions and achievements. The main objective of the expositions in these eras was to merge the art and science together and provide a platform for them to grow. The expos held in 1851 (London), 1890 (Paris), 1893 (Chicago), 1900 (Paris), 1904 (St Louis) and 1915 (San Francisco) are the landmark of the industrialization era.
In this era of cultural exchange between the years 1939 to 1987 was based on specific themes of cultural significance that address the issues of mankind. Though technology and inventions were still important, it was no longer the principal focus of the exhibitions. The expositions held in these era were future oriented and themes like 'Building the World Tomorrow' (New York, 1939) were given importance. The Montreal expo (1967) held in this era was considered the most successful world Fair of the twentieth century with 67 nations and over 50 million people participating it. It is during this era that the world fair started to be called s the world Expos.
The expositions held after 1987 are aimed at improving the nation's image. Each country focuses on improving the national image though their pavilion. And the expos from Brisbane expo, 1988 started using the pavilion as an advertisement and campaign for the country's branding through different products and artworks.
This year, hosts Milan the Expo under the theme "Feeding the planet, energy for life'.
The highlight of the World expo is the pavilion where the country will display its architecture, technologies and cultures and these pavilion act as the show case of the country. The international exhibition or the World Expo attracts millions of people from all over the world to experience the culture and art and technology of different country brought under a single roof.