StampNews.com is glad to let our readers know that Canada Post has unveiled the first stamp in a set of 10 that will capture unforgettable moments of the last 50 years as country celebrates Canada 150.
The first item depicts Moshe Safdie’s Habitat 67 – a modular housing complex that earned global accolades as an icon of urban living. It is a futuristic structure representing the event for which it was built: Expo 67.
Safdie unveiled the stamp in the very building that forever placed his signature on his adopted city. With Habitat 67, Safdie – a bold, brash and brilliant young architect on the verge of launching a significant global career – captured an era of optimism, energy and progress. This project also launched his incredible career that has had him design prestigious buildings around the world, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Quebec Museum of Civilization, Marina Bay Sands in Singapore and the United States Institute of Peace in Washington, D.C.
Habitat 67 was perfect for Expo 67, the international festival that transformed its host city of Montréal and the country itself. Canada introduced itself to the world with Expo 67 as a country of seemingly boundless talent and potential. The event brought Canadians from across the country and visitors from around the world together for six months between April and October 1967. When Canada's population was only 20 million, more than 50 million people attended. That ratio set a per-capita attendance record for a World's Fair, which still stands. It is widely considered the most successful World's Fair of the 20th century.
Those six months became a landmark moment for Canada – socially, culturally and politically. Several generations of Canadians have since pointed to it as the signature event of our centennial year. It featured pavilions from 62 countries, as well as Canada’s provinces and territories. It was an opportunity for Canadians to get better acquainted with Quebec culture. It attracted many notable figures of the time, including Queen Elizabeth II, U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson, Princess Grace of Monaco, Jacqueline Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy, and Bing Crosby. The Ed Sullivan Show was broadcast live from Expo 67 twice that May. Many Canadians associate Bobby Gimby’s popular centennial tune Ca-na-da with Expo 67.
With the theme “Man and His World,” the event also showcased Canadian innovation – be it technology, urban planning, industry or architecture. The vision and legacy of Expo 67 still echo today through Montréal's infrastructure, architecture, public art and the two islands in the St. Lawrence River.
The next stamp in the Canada 150 set will be revealed in Ottawa on Wednesday, May 3. The others will be unveiled individually at cities across the country, the last of them on June 1.