This is Part 1 of a two-part series chronicling my visit to the EMP Museum in Seattle. This Part 1 feature will focus on the current Movie-related exhibits at the museum, while Part 2 has been published on sister site, Rock Subculture Journal, and that photo journal will cover the Music-related exhibits. The current movie and television related exhibits include “Icons of Science Fiction” and “Can’t Look Away: The Lure of the Horror Film”.
Please visit www.rocksubculture.com to see:
The current movie-related exhibits during my visit this past week were:
- Icons of Science Fiction
- Can’t Look Away: The Lure of the Horror Film
Below is the description of the “Icons of Science Fiction” exhibit from the official www.empsfm.org website:
Featuring iconic artifacts from sci-fi literature, film, television, and art, including an Imperial Dalek from Doctor Who, the command chair from the classic television series Star Trek, and Neo’s coat from The Matrix Reloaded.
Sample diverse forms of science fiction, learn about the pervasiveness of the genre in popular culture, and connect science fiction’s big ideas to the artists, writers, and filmmakers who spawned them with six unique sectors that highlight the work of EMP’s Science Fiction Hall of Fame inductees. Drawing on questions that propel the plots in science fiction media such as, “What if we fought a war with Aliens?” “What if we could explore the stars?” or “What if we were enslaved by our machines?” Icons of Science Fiction allows visitors to traverse the creative spirit of sci-fi innovators, while simultaneously reveling in the physical artifacts inspired by their distinct visions. See video game art, pull on a second persona with antennas, ray gun, and cape from the compositing special effects installation, and see the flying saucers and light sabers that have come to form the basis of our collective consciousness.
Below is the description of the “Can’t Look Away: The Lure of Horror Film” exhibit from the official www.empsfm.org website:
Examine the pivotal role that horror plays in the human experience. Three iconic horror directors—Roger Corman, John Landis, and Eli Roth—have curated a selection of their favorite films, providing a solid foundation on which audiences can safely explore the spectrum of cinematic horror, from its inception at the turn of the 20th century to the present day. Visitors can view artifacts that include the script from Night of the Living Dead, the alien creature suit from Alien, and Jack Torrance’s axe from The Shining; watch interviews with the directors; and scream bloody murder. Interactive highlights include a Scream Booth, Horror Soundscapes, Monster Timeline, and Philip Worthington’s interactive shadow monster installation.
Beware! Due to the subject matter explored, this exhibition has a suggested rating of PG-13.
Having some idea of how much material the museum/Paul Allen have purchased at auction of the years, I was somewhat surprised that there was not more on display at the EMP Museum.
The most surreal moment, for me, was viewing the horror exhibit and coming across the “Mr. Pointy” stake from the Buffy The Vampire Slayer television show, which I used to own and sold at auction. It is gratifying to know that the public at large can now enjoy it, rather than sitting on a shelf in my house.
Overall, it is an extremely impressive museum, even if you never go inside. The building itself is really cool and a piece of art in itself. Inside, it is quite vast, and very modern in appearance and layout. They’ve done a fantastic job in presenting all of the amazing artifacts on display. There are also a number of interactive elements throughout, which adds to (and lengthens) the overall experience.
I had a great time checking out everything the museum has to offer, and give it my highest recommendation to check out if you make it to the Seattle area.
Below are related images from my visit to the EMP Museum this past weekend. Click any image for higher resolution.