EMP Museum

I took myself on another vacation in September, which is why I missed September’s second post. But never fear, since I visited many more museums on the trip, I will be doing double posts each month till the end of the year, unless work decides to butt in and steal more of my time. So look forward to another post at the end of the month… Continuing on in Seattle: I enjoy science fiction to an extent, I adore aliens, thus I was excited to visit…

EMP (Experience Music Project) Museum, located in Seattle, Washington

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The EMP museum is also located in the Seattle Center, so it makes sense to visit (if you are interested), after seeing the Space Needle and/or Chihuly. Admission for the museum varies according to the website: if you buy online, $18, in person from Monday to Thursday, $20; and in person from Friday to Sunday, $22. The museum hours were from 10am to 5pm when I visited. The EMP is one of the attractions included in the Seattle CityPass, and one of the contributing factors to why I bought the pass.

The museum is big, and has plenty of doors, but not many people using any of the doors, thus me and my friend were quite confused as to where the entrance was. We eventually found our way in, and the first thing we saw was the museum store. It’s pretty typical to have the museum store near the entrance or exit;  it’s just that this museum store wasn’t enclosed, it was just an open space with items for sale, which is somewhat peculiar for a museum store.

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The main reason I wanted to visit the EMP was to see the science fiction gallery, Icons of Science Fiction, which was the first place I ran to. Unfortunately, I felt unwell when I saw the science fiction gallery, and the horror film gallery, Can’t Look Away, thus I don’t quite remember what either exhibits contained. Based on the few pictures I snapped of the science fiction gallery, there were displays of various artifacts related to sci-fi. I would’ve enjoyed the horror gallery a lot more, too, since I also really enjoy horror films. There is a section in there that shows clips of various horror movies (which I remember because I sat down to take a rest). In addition, there were various items on display that were related to horror films, such as the top 100 horror films to watch before you die.

Since the museum is called the Experience Music Project museum, music is expected to be an experience. The museum has a huge theater-like screen, called the Sky Church, that constantly plays a variety of videos including music videos and short films. There are seats around for people to sit and enjoy the videos, however, the sound is superbly loud, so for those who do not want to get their ear drums blasted away, don’t sit so close. There are various chairs here and there, with obscured views, but better for the ears. (I rested on this nice couch, and saw Michael Jackson’s Thriller MV for the first time. My friend insists it was this video that cured me as I started to feel better at that point after sitting for almost an hour.)

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As I felt better, I had more energy to enjoy the rest of the museum, and first up is the Block by Block: Inventing Amazing Architecture exhibit. The gallery displayed models of world famous structures, made of Legos. I liked this exhibit because I am amazed by what people are able to do. I grew up with a Lego set of my own, and I remember having a hard time following the instructions to make a truck or a helicopter, even though the set came with everything. I can’t imagine building a skyscraper with Legos from scratch. However, if you would like to build a Lego model, there is a hands on area within.

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The museum has a guitar sculpture, made entirely of guitars. It resembles an upside Christmas tree. Next up, was the Jimi Hendrix exhibit, Hear My Train A Comin’: Hendrix Hits London. Forgive me readers, but I don’t really know who he is, I just know the name.  So I breezed through the exhibit as I really didn’t know anything about the man, thus I was not interested. However for those who are interested, the exhibit is two rooms, and contains plenty of Hendrix memorabilia. Right next to the Hendrix exhibit is the Guitar Gallery: The Quest For Volume, which showcases guitars. There really were a lot of guitars there, in various colors and shapes, it’s guitar heaven. (Please excuse the blurry pictures, it was rather dim, thus hard to get a good picture.)

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My friend didn’t really want to see the Nirvana: Taking Punk To The Masses exhibit, so we zipped by, and I snapped a few shots. I’m not a big Nirvana fan either (they’re hay day was before my consciousness set in), I only know one song. The exhibit claims to have the most extensive collection of Nirvana memorabilia, so fans will definitely enjoy it.

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The Fantasy: Worlds Of Myth and Magic exhibit is right by the sci-fi and horror exhibits, yet I missed it in the beginning,  I guess I was too excited to see the sci-fi exhibit. I really enjoyed the fantasy exhibit, it’s more up my alley then music related galleries. The exhibit contains various pop culture artifacts, such as clothes worn by Tyrion and Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones, original manuscripts from prominent fantasy writers, and various others.

The museum has 3 floors, however all of the above galleries are on the second floor. And for some reason, I failed to visit the other two floors; I actually don’t think I saw stairs leading to either floor. According to my handy floor map, the 1st floor contains the restaurant and a few rooms for special events, and the 3rd floor contains all the interactive experiences, thus I didn’t miss much by not visiting either floor.

Although I missed two floors, I did get a chance to see the bathroom, and I have to say it was interesting. In most of NYC, there is only one way to flush the toilets, push the toilet handle down, but in the EMP museum, there are two, push the handle down or pull it up. One of the ways uses less water, which I think is a really good thing, there should be more of these toilets everywhere.

My friend and I spent a total of two hours in the museum, and considering that I spent almost an hour sitting on the couch, the total time to see the museum was about one hour. For a museum this size, one hour seems not to be enough time, but I did go through a few of these exhibits rather fast, therefore it will take more time to look at everything thoroughly. For the price I paid (using the Seattle CityPass), I felt the museum was worth it. The museum covers a variety of topics that even the pickiest will have something to enjoy, so definitely take a stroll to the EMP museum if you’re in Seattle, you will find something to pique your interest.

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