Prague Exhibition Grounds (Výstaviště Praha)

The area of the Výstaviště Praha is an exhibition place with long tradition and also the favourite cultural – amusement centre.

Besides the national and international exhibitions and trade fairs there took place various cultural events, congresses and workshops. The whole area has the extent of 320 000 square meters and there are fast 30000 covered and opened exhibition stands.

If we pass through the entrance gate at the left side there is the building of the Modern Gallery that is decorated with the busts of 18 famous Czech artists and sculptures. At present is the building used by the Academy of the fine arts. Opposite there is the Lapidárium of the National Museum, with the collection of the stone sculptures and architectonic fragments. The collections placed here come mostly from the buildings destroyed during the great demolition wave at the turn of the 19th and 20″1 centuries, from the repaired churches, or from the archaeological findings. In 1996 Lapidarium got a special award and became one of the prominent European Museums.

Since 2002 can the visitors see the unique exhibition of the sea fish and other sea animals. The Sea World is located at the other side of the Lapidarium, and at more than one thousands meters there are spread the aquariums the place of with more than 75000 litres of sea water. The computer operated lightning and pumps are imitating the high and low tides and the night shine of the moon to ensure the sea animals and corals ideal condition for their life.

The Industry Palace, called also Central, Exhibition and Congress stayed in its original shape. The middle part of the Palace is laid at eight arched girders; the Central Tower with the spiral stairs, dome and gallery is 51 high. The Palace was designed by the architect Bedřich Munzberger and was decorated by the most important artists.

Little Sports Hall is designed as the multifunctional object that is used not only for the sports events (the Stadium has the ice surface but is suitable also for exhibitions and other cultural activities.

The first light fountain in the world was installed in 1885 in London at the Exhibition of Inventions. Other fountains appeared later in Manchester (1887), Glasgow and Barcelona (1888), further in Paris and Vienna. The present Křižík fountain is placed at the same place like the previous one and from the others it differs by the higher intensity of the light that is made thanks to the use of the arc lamps with the mirrors. For the lighting are used 1248 underwater spot lights with five different colours and the possibility of wide spectrum of colours. The programme of fountain is conducted by the computer. Around the pool was built the amphitheatre for 6000 spectators and four new glass pavilions.

Next to the Křižík fountain there is the building of the Swimming Pool, at present is under reconstruction, and next to it stands the Pyramida Goja Music Hall used for musical performance as the other theatre Spiral in the park. For the exhibitions there are used several Křižík pavilions.

The Marold panorama is the largest picture of the history event that was created in our country. It depicts the legendary fight in 1434 at Lipany, when the Prague citizens contributed to the defeat of the Hussite army of Prokop Holý. The picture was made in 1898 by Luděk Marold with the help of the landscape painter Václav Jansa and scenographer of the National Theatre Karl Štapfer, that made the model of the foreground.
The Marold panorama is opened Tuesday-Friday, from 14-17 hours, Saturday-Sunday, from 10-17 hours, since October till March v is closed.

The Prague Výstaviště is connected with the St Matthews Wake, although the traditional Prague Wake at the end of the February in honour of the St Matthew originally took place somewhere else and looked also different. The pilgrimage to the Church of St Matthew that was placed in the fields far from the hectic Prague took several hours. Later on the wake moved close to the centre, approximately to the present Victory Place and there were placed the merry-go-rounds, switchbacks and other attractions. In the last years in the area of the Výstaviště the Matějská Wake took place in spring and in autumn the Václavská Wake. The Výstaviště is close connected with Stromovka Park, where we can took rest or walk around the park and visit Planetarium and of course we shouldn’t forget the Holešovice Market- Hall with the Theatre Milénium.

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