Ford and Futurism: Modern Time at the Panama-Pacific International Exposition

  • Author / Creator
    Belanger, Noelle
  • My thesis explores the intersection of time and speed in two different displays at the 1915 San Francisco Panama-Pacific International Exposition (PPIE). In chapter one, titled “The Assembly Line: Accumulation,” I analyse a narrative of progress enacted in the Ford Motor Company’s popular modified assembly line display that produced one Model T every ten minutes during its operation. Chapter two, titled “Italian Futurism: Collision,” explores the first exhibition of Italian Futurist painting and sculpture in America at the PPIE. In order to contextualize the exhibition I will take up the critical reception of the exhibition before examining conceptions of speed and progress in the work of literary founder Filippo Tommaso Marinetti and artist Umberto Boccioni. Both displays are visual narratives of progress presented as spectacles of speed and time. In juxtaposing the two I endeavour to elucidate the false promise of technological liberation implied at the end of each narrative.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Spring 2013
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Master of Arts
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.