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Entries / Industrial Exhibitions (entry)

Industrial Exhibitions (entry)

Categories / Economy/Industry
Categories / Art/Fine Arts/Exhibition Halls, Galleries, Festivals

INDUSTRIAL EXHIBITIONS, organised by the government from the 1820s, intended to boost the national industry, interior and foreign trade, under the jurisdiction of the Trade and Manufactory Department of the Ministry of Finance. Special committees were set up to carry out preparations, develop programs, conduct correspondence with stand-holders, forming a committee of experts for the evaluation of exhibit items, judgement of awards. The Ministry of Finance allocated the industrial exhibitions' organisational costs. At the end of each industrial exhibition, the head commissar of the committee submitted a report with an analysis of the state of the industry, production development rate, and perspective trade. The first All-Russian industrial exhibition took place in 1829 in Saint Petersburg, and others were held in the capital in 1833, 1839, 1849 and 1861, all taking place at the Southern Warehouse of the Stock-Exchange, and at a temporary exhibition hall. The premises of the Salt Storehouses (see Solyanoy (salt) Settlement) were rebuilt to accommodate the industrial exhibition of 1870, and later housed many other exhibitions. The right to put the state emblem on the wares, documents and advertising material was the highest award a participant of an industrial exhibition could receive. In 1902 and 1913, St. Petersburg welcomed the All-Russian Artisan Exhibition, the first one taking place in the Tauride Palace, the second on the territory of the Botanic Garden, where artisans from 75 Russian provinces exhibited their wares. The second half of the century saw the emergence of specialised industrial exhibitions, organised by scientific societies, entrepreneurs and public organisations. The Imperial Russian Technical Society (IRTO) organised a series of electrotechnical exhibitions in St. Petersburg in 1880, 1882, 1885-86 and 1892. The first two served mostly scientific purposes, while the third and especially the fourth one opened up the development of a new branch of industry. IRTO also hosted an exhibition on galvanoplastics (1889), two exhibitions of lighting and heating appliances (1908 and 1913-14), and an exhibition of internal-combustion engines (1910). In 1895 IRTO embarked on organising in St. Petersburg The First All-Russian Publishing Exhibition (at the Solyanoy Settlement), bringing together stand-holders from 50 cities. In 1909 The Millers' Association held The First All-Russian Milling Exhibition at the Solyanoy Settlement with participants from Russian granaries. The Russian Automobile Society, with a contribution by Petersburg Avtomobil journal and Paris L'Auto, put its hand to organising the First International Automobile Exhibition (1907, in Mikhaylovsky Manege). Following the initiative of the City Duma, the capital hosted two artisan exhibitions (1885 and 1899, Solyanoy Settlement), displaying the state of artisan production in the capital. The Petersburg committee of the Red Cross stepped forward to initiate the French-Russian Exhibition (1899, The Solyanoy Settlement), representing crafts, artisan and industrial sections. The revenues went to a boarding school for crippled children. The Committee for the Care of Poor and Ill Children sponsored the Ceramic Exhibition (1901, The Passage Mall), with both industrially manufactured and artisan-made wares from Russia and ten other countries. The Imperial All-Russian Air Club put together an exhibition of multi-stage production cycles from various industries (1911, Mikhaylovsky Manege). Profits went to the development of a Russian Air Fleet. An overview of the state of various branches of industry and the achievements of particular enterprises could be seen at the Iron Exhibition (1903, The Solyanoy Settlement), the Machinery for Gold and Platinum Mining Exhibition (1907, Manege of the First Cadet Corps), the International Construction and Architectural Exhibition (1908, The Stone Island), the International Exhibition of Furniture and Home-Decor (1908, Mikhaylovsky Manege), The International Fire Exhibition (1912, Horse Guards Manege), the All-Russian Hygiene Exhibition (1913, Maly Petrovsky Park), and a number of others. Exhibitions were frequently timed to coincide with conventions and congresses which enabled entrepreneurs and other participants to discuss relevant problems. After October 1917, industrial exhibitions were barely held in Leningrad. It was not until after 1968 that, on the occasion of the International Inrybprom (Fish Industry) Exhibition, the city saw the construction of the Lenexpo exposition centre, which organises and hosts exhibitions.

References: Никитин Ю. А. Выставочный Петербург: От экспозиционной залы до Ленэкспо. Череповец, 2003.

V. S. Solomko.

The subject Index
Ministry of Finance
Ministry of Finance
Solyanoy Settlement
Tauride Palace
Russian Technical Society
City Duma
Air Club
Passage, department store