Museum of Pop Culture’s 20-Year Celebration
By Amy Lignor
The Museum of Pop Culture (AKA: MoPOP), has reached two decades in Seattle, and is still going strong!
For those who haven’t had the ability, time, or luck to visit MoPOP, it’s important to note that this was created in order to make creative expression a life-changing force by offering experiences that both inspire and connect people, communities, and the world as a whole. This is one mission they have completely achieved. Operating with “open-arm” hospitality, MoPOP has become a space for the finest collaborations in pop culture. This venue is used by people of all ages for inspiration, fun, and education.
Starting with the building itself, visitors will see that MoPOP pursued excellence from the ground-up. Their hard work led to amazing things, but the architecture brings out excitement when people behold the incredible building. On the outside, three thousand panels, each made up of 21 thousand individually-cut and shaped stainless steel, and painted aluminum shingles can be seen. The myriad of colors makes this a work of art that changes at different angles and under different light conditions throughout the day. It’s so unique that MoPOP’s volunteers offer tours of the building for those who wish to see the ultimate “blueprint” of a masterpiece.
Inside, Sky Church is a true hub of activity. Named after a Jimi Hendrix idea of a place where people from all backgrounds and beliefs could come together through music, Sky Church has state-of-the-art acoustics and a 65-foot-high ceiling illuminated with parasols floating overhead. In the Blue Lounge, visitors find a contemporary space, while The Lounge, has a fun look with a custom-made, guitar-top bar.
The JBL Theater is frequently utilized, with the latest equipment for video, film, and live performances, as well as a built-in projector and screen for use in presentations and viewings. This intimate space is an acoustic dream and has fixed seating for 191. And when it comes to a grand staircase that allows you to ascend ‘into the heavens’ to explore, the East Lobby offers precisely that and provides awe-inspiring views. From a Culture Kitchen by the famous chef, Wolfgang Puck, to the gardens outside providing a peaceful oasis, everything can be found here.
In addition, the Learning Labs have become renowned for their ability to bring out the creativity in students from all across the country. Set near the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame, students come to MoPOP to learn and explore the arts.
Even with the pandemic giving closure problems, the upcoming events at MoPOP are scheduled and will cover some fantastic subjects that everyone will want to see or play a part in: from a horror film ‘watch along’; to a film series that will honor the 50th anniversary of Earth Day called, “Good Planets Are Hard to Find,” where each film in the five-part series touches on a different environmental theme.
Coming in October “The Art of the Disney Costume” is a new exhibition for families to enjoy that expands our understanding of Disney’s iconic characters. Not to mention, the In-Museum Workshops in the areas of sci-fi and fantasy, focused on 3rd through 8th grades, will open up the arts to the next generation.
MoPOP has earned its solid reputation as a place everyone must explore during their lifetime. Thus, we say: Happy 20th anniversary, MoPOP! We can’t wait to see what’s in store for the next twenty down the road.