Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes - St Louis Science Center

As St Louis Sherlockains we are lucky that our Science Center is one of the host cities for The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes.
I am luck enough to have a little time off of work and was able to attend it yesterday.

 Unlike Holmes, I can not start a 'case' without a good breakfast.
So, since we were in the area we hit a St Louis landmark, 'Courtesy Cafe' . . .
 But, like Holmes, I do need a good assistant.
 Several blocks around the Science Center had banners and signs advertising the exhibit.
And since this is right along Hwy 70 it should get peoples attention.
 Sign along the side walk.
 Waiting in line to use the phone.
 Inside advertisement.
A little hokey but okay.
 After handing over your tickets, you walk into the gallery. The first, as should be, is devoted to Doyle, Victorian medicine and the creation of Holmes. For the older Sherlockains amongst us, there could have been a little bit more about Doyle, but what they had was a good introduction.

Poe is also give some credit for being an early founder of the form.
 Early medicine and its tools.
We were not allowed to use flash, so I could not get the photos I really would have liked.
This display shows Bells teaching gown and some of his letters. There was a very good nod to Dr. Bell. And a very good painting of him.
 The displays were very well done and very well lit.
Some were just around to set the theme, while others were relevant to the display.

Here is assistant with London street window, which on the other side was part of Baker St.
 After the displays about Doyle and Bell, we came to a section on the manuscripts and how they appeared in publication.

There were many first additions and rare letter and art work.

To the true Sherlockain of early work this was indeed a treat.

Very good labeling and numbering described each piece.
First edition Hound and letters from Doyle.
 Strand and other magazines on display.

After the historical displays about Doyle and Holmes the next section was devoted to understanding forensic science of the time. The displays were set up to help you understand the mystery you could be solving later in the exhibition. Each station would be relevant later in the show. The lighting was not good enough for me to get many pictures of this part, but the displays were fun and educational. Aimed at the younger participants.

 They also had period hosts wondering around to help and answer any questions.
Hear is one posing with daughter.
 Next you came to several displays set up to represent 221b Baker St.  It was broken up into four sections instead of one room. But, although broken up, to aid with the mystery people were working on, they were still very well done.

Here is the seats around the fireplace.
 By the window and the wax statue of Holmes.

Each room had several things in them that visitors needed to find as sort of a scavenger hunt.
 Seats by the fireplace again.

Although the items needing to be found were very Canonical, there was no explanation for the non-Sherlockian on how they appeared in the stories.

 Holmes' chemical desk.
 Pipe and tea cup.
 Watson writing desk.

After viewing the rooms at 221b you went into a section where the below room was set up as a crime scene. You were to observe numbered items in the room as clues and then go to station where four examples or explanations of the clues were shown. You had to pick the one that you thought best matched the crime scene. It was a little confusing, but very fun. (Or maybe I am just not a good detective.)
Again the lighting was not good enough for my camera to get good photos of the stations.

 The crime scene.
 After solving (or not) the mystery you entered the gallery that displayed items that have used Sherlocks representation of the years.

Here you can see 'Young Sherlock Holmes' and other movie stuff.
 Games and toys that have used his likeness.
 Some of my favorite things were all the art work by Paget and Steele.

Covers, sketches, prints, etc.
 I love these two.
Steele's work on early covers.
 More toys/
 Lots of movie props from some of the latest works.

Here is Blackwood's coffin from the first RDJ movie.
 Other props from that movie.
 And again.
 The lock wall from 'Elementary'.
 One of Lucy Liu's outfits from 'Elementary'.
 Miller's outfit from 'Elementary'.
 Do you recognize these from 'Sherlock'?

This last gallery was a great experience for anyone in to the movie or TV world of Holmes.

Over all the exhibition was very well done, with things to be found for die hard Sherlockians or casual fan. Most of it pertained to the Canonical Holmes more than the movie or modern Holmes, with just enough of that for those interested.
It was mostly aimed for a family experience but I saw a lot of adult Sherlockians taking it in.
The science center asked for volunteers to help at things like this and we spotted several local Sherlockians we knew.
If it come near you, you should go. I plan on trying to volunteer at least a few times.
We enjoyed it very much.

No comments:

Post a Comment