Edition 2023


At the Household Appliances Show, 1923-1983

Flying Tray, Automatic Dishwasher, Instant Mashed Potatoes

“Flying tray, dishwasher, instant mashed potatoes”: this triad echoes the list of fanciful machines permeating daily life in Boris Vian’s Complainte du progrès [Lament of Progress], which was played over loudspeakers at the 1956 Household Appliances Show. They embody the spirit of innovation and modernity that were the fair’s trademark. Created one hundred years ago in 1923, the event drew millions of inquisitive visitors until its last edition in 1983. It accompanied the emergence of consumer society, which changed the way people lived, affected the role attributed to women at home and cemented gender stereotypes. As a counterpoint, old objects from the Museum of Folk Arts and Traditions, witnesses to a vanishing society, were on display at the fair between 1953 and 1959. The exhibition creates a dialogue between original photographs from the National Archives and traditional objects from a bygone world held in the collections of Mucem.


July 7 – October 8

Admission included with the Rencontres d’Arles 2023 pass.

Curators: Marie-Ève Bouillon, Marie-Charlotte Calafat and Enguerrand Lascols.

Publication: Marie-Ève Bouillon and Sandrine Bula, Plateau volant, motolaveur, purée minute. Au Salon des Arts ménagers (1923-1983), with the participation of Sylvie Le Goëdec, Aurélie Peylhard, Edith Pirio (National Archives) and Martine Segalen, Paris, CNRS Éditions, 2022.

  • Institutional partners

    • République Française
    • Région Provence Alpes Côté d'Azur
    • Département des Bouches du Rhône
    • Arles
    • Le Centre des monuments nationaux est heureux de soutenir les Rencontres de la Photographie d’Arles en accueillant des expositions dans l’abbaye de Montmajour
  • Main partners

    • Fondation LUMA
    • BMW
    • SNCF
    • Kering
  • Media partners

    • Arte
    • Lci
    • Konbini
    • Le Point
    • Madame Figaro
    • France Culture