The concept of the EMP Museum in Seattle is very interesting. It is a museum dedicated to popular culture, including movies, music and narrative.
There were a range of interesting exhibitions when we visited today.
My husband is a fiction writer, so we were very excited to visit.
The Fantasy: World of Myth and Magic was presented very well. There were pine needles on the floor, a dragon and a range of small spaces to present different information.
The exhibition includes costumes from a range of influential movies, such as the Wizard of Oz, The Princess Bride, Pan’s Labyrinth and Labyrinth. The detail in the costumes is amazing and it was great to see the wedding dress worn by Princess Buttercup in the Princess Bride, one of the most quotable movies of all time.
There was also information about key contributors to the genre, such as CS Lewis, Lewis Carrollq, Tolkien and George RR Martin.
There were also a number of props from movies such as the US movie versions of the Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, which is not as good as the definitive British TV version.
There was also a section on role playing and included an original edition of Dungeons and Dragons.
The next exhibition was focused on Icons of Science Fiction which lead to an interesting discussion on what science fiction is, and how it differs from fantasy or horror. There were a number of interesting props and costumes from Star Trek, Star Wars and the Matrix. There are also a number of interviews with science fiction authors and film makers.
There was also an exhibition of the lure of horror films. Lots of props and costumes from a range of horror films, both old and new. There was also a fun, interactive “shadow wall” which creates shapes based on your shadow.
There were also exhibition on Jimi Hendrix and a discussed the Seattle music scene, with an area dedicated to Nirvana
The exhibits were all presented very well. However, there were some gaps in the exhibitions and an over emphasis on others. There was also a lack of context in the items, such as how these movies and novels influenced popular culture and what, if any, was important about them. Seeing the shirt from Shaun of the Dead is great, but it would be better to learn about how that movie impacted on popular culture, of the horror genre.