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Worlds Fairs

Bureau International des Expositions

Last modified: 2005-11-12 by rob raeside
Keywords: worlds fair | bureau international des expositions | bie | world fair |
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[Bureau International des Expositions] by Urso S. A. Chappell

The BIE, the Bureau International des Expositions, is the international body that sanctions international expositions (world's fairs). It consists of the BIE logo in blue on a white field. The logo was created by a Japanese student in 1969. It is flown at all sanctioned world's fairs. I do not know if there is an official height-to-width ratio.

Urso S. A. Chappell, 3 January 2002

The world's fair flag was created for Expo'70 in Osaka. It is white with the BIE symbol in the middle. At most closing ceremonies these days it is pass to the next host city something like the Olympic flag. Many individual expos have had their own flags as well - for the most part these have also been white with the each expo's symbol in the middle. The earliest flag 
I've seen is from New York 1939.

Mike Kuna, 25 May 2002

Many of the World's Fairs appear to have developed unique flags for the event.  We have tried to collect links to these flags below.  The list of World's Fairs is based on one in the World Almanac, augmented by the Swedish Nationalencyklopedin (Vol. 20, VITRY-ÖÄ, Bokförlaget Bra Böcker, Höganäs 1996, p. 127).  Some flags are only known (so far) by description - these are described below.

mid 1800's, New York (Bryant Park)?
1851, London
1853, New York
1853, Dublin
1855, Paris
1862, London
1867, Paris
1873, Vienna
1874, Dublin
1876, Philadelphia
1878, Paris
1884, New Orleans
1885, Antwerp
1886, London
1888, Glasgow
1888, Melbourne
1889, Paris
1893, Chicago
1894, San Francisco
1895, Atlanta
1897, Brussels
1900, Paris
1901, Buffalo
1904, Saint Louis
1905, Liège
1906, Milan
1907, Dublin
1907, Hampton Roads, USA
1909, Seattle
1910, Brussels
1911, Turin
1913, Gent
1915, San Francisco
1915-16, San Diego
1922-23, Rio de Janeiro
1924-25, London (Wembley)
1925-26, Paris
1926, Philadelphia
1929 Exposición Iberoamericana at Seville and Exposición Universal at Barcelona
1930, Seville, Antwerp, Liège
1931, Paris
1933-34, Chicago
1935, Brussels
1937, Paris.  The modern Breton flag (Gwenn-ha-Du) made one of its first public appearances during the 1937 Fair.
1939-40, New York
1939-40, San Francisco
1958, Brussels
1962, Seattle
1964-65, New York, blue and orange background with symbol
1967, Montreal, sky blue with symbol in white
1968, San Antonio
1970, Osaka, white with symbol in red or blue
1974, Spokane, white with symbol
1975, Okinawa, white with symbol in blue
1982, Knoxville, white with symbol in red
1984, New Orleans, white with symbol in blue
1985, Tsukuba, white with symbol in blue
1986, Vancouver, sky blue with symbol in white
1988, Brisbane, white with symbol
1992, Seville, white with symbol
1992, Genoa
1993, Taejon, white with symbol
1998, Lisbon, white with symbol
2000, Hannover, there must have been about 5 or 6 different versions - for example green background with symbol in purple
2004, Seine-Saint-Denis, France
2004, Seto, Japan