Preview museum for the Museum of Science Fiction architectural rendering by Imarchination (all images courtesy the Museum of Science Fiction)

Preview museum for the Museum of Science Fiction, architectural rendering by Imarchination (all images courtesy the Museum of Science Fiction)

The world’s first comprehensive science fiction museum may be opening in the near future in Washington, DC, but first it needs to crowdfund. Luckily for the museum, there are few fans as dedicated as those who love sci-fi.

The Museum of Science Fiction is aiming to raise enough ($160,000) through an Indiegogo campaign to actually open a preview space as early as next year in the downtown area, which would feature sci-fi movie objects, a model of the Star Trek Enterprise, as well as exhibitions of art. As the museum’s executive director Greg Viggiano told Hyperallergic over the phone, the exchange between art and science through fictional narratives is a key focus of the museum.

Preview museum architectural rendering by Imarchination

Preview museum architectural rendering by Imarchination

“Art is a major component and we’re trying to give that equal weight to what people would ordinarily be expecting to see in terms of television and film aspects of the museum,” said Viggiano. He also noted that among the museum landscape in Washington, DC, they could provide a voice that is missing from the dialogue, but certainly wouldn’t be out-of-place. He noted that the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum has already hosted science fiction exhibitions, and that in a way the Museum of Science Fiction could even be “the fantasy wing or the conceptual wing” of this interest in space exploration and the outer limits of technology.

Phil Smith, an artist, futurist, historian, and space industry analyst, is already on board as their chief curator, as are art collectors Howard and Jane Frank and architectural firm Imarchination to give the space its futuristic atmosphere. The 3,000-square-foot preview space will include a massive LED screen where they also plan to incorporate digital art and sci-fi landscapes that people can view from a coffee bar. There has been a Science Fiction Museum and Hall of Fame founded by Microsoft billionaire Paul Allen, but that is now part of the greater Experience Music Project museum in Seattle that focuses on music and popular culture, and there really isn’t a museum that seriously concentrates on the wider scope of science fiction. While the museum itself has a goal date of 2017, the preview space could be a microcosm of some interesting conversations on how art and science fiction have evolved alongside each other, as well as how hard science can be inspired and be an inspiration for science fiction.

The Museum of Science Fiction is funding its storefront preview on Indiegogo through December 11. 

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Allison Meier

Allison C. Meier is a former staff writer for Hyperallergic. Originally from Oklahoma, she has been covering visual culture and overlooked history for print...

2 replies on “Crowdfunding a New Museum of Science Fiction”

  1. Some examples of the artists that have already been exhibited in the House of Elsewhere ? Dave McKean, James Gurney, Luc Schuiten, Mervyn Peake’s drawings, Ken Rinaldo, Greg Broadmore, Stéphane Halleux, Aleksi Briclot, Rashit Safiullin (see more : http://www.ailleurs.ch/en/expositions/archives/)… And for next year : an exhibition on Superheroes in Contemporary Art and another one with John Howe and Benjamin Carré…

    For those who like Science Fiction tradition, you should know that the House of Elsewhere has 120’000 museological documents (books, comics, pulp magazines, vinyls, posters, toys, games, etc.) since the 16th Century until today : http://www.ailleurs.ch/en/collections/

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