Science Fiction Fans Plan D.C. Museum

Outer spice miners as depicted by artist Phil Smith, the museum's chief curatorial designer. Courtesy of the Museum of Science Fiction

Remember when science fiction was fun? So do the folks behind the Museum of Science Fiction and they hope to bring back that optimism from the great days of space exploration and, uh, little green men.

Here’s what the folks behind the museum, planned for Washington, D.C., promise:

“Over the past few decades, science fiction has trended away from technology and innovation and toward negative dystopian representations of the future. Some of the museum’s exhibits will explore this trend; however, the presiding theme among the museum’s content will be bold, futuristic innovation. The museum will support a revival of the science fiction that inspires positive imagination.”

“The Museum of Science Fiction will highlight innovation, imagination, and the human need to explore.”

The museum may still exist only in the future, but it is a foreseeable future. A fundraising campaign is seeking to raise $3 million by the end of the year, a site is being sought, and an architectural competition is underway – international, if not intergalactic.

A wonderful illustration by the mid-century artist known as "Emsh." Courtesy of the Museum of Scince Fiction

Parties have been held, featuring “the likes of C-3PO, R2-D2, Boba Fett, and other costumed representatives of the 501st Legion.”  And of course there’s a Facebook page.

Science fiction, of course, is one of the world’s great literatures and its heyday, some will say, was right in the mid-century when magazines like Astounding Science Fiction, Galaxy and If enchanted young lads everywhere.

And since then it’s gone mainstream.

“The museum will be composed of seven permanent galleries designed to celebrate and encourage the very human tendency to always ask: 'What if?' Visitors will learn that science fiction is a form of rational speculation that has influenced and been influenced by scientific and technological progress for centuries. It’s primary objective is to entertain, to infuse storytelling with threads of science that help push the bounds of what is possible in an effort to explore the human condition. Anchored by science, science fiction can open credible vistas of speculation and contemplation, making their consideration even more compelling and powerful.”

We’re looking forward to blasting off!

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