Interactive exhibition presents a riveting journey into the mind of Sherlock Holmes, the world’s most famous detective, and unlocks his revolutionary investigative secrets
SAINT PAUL, Minn., April 25, 2013 — The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes makes its world premiere at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) in Portland, Oregon, October 10, 2013, exhibition organizers announced today.
A collaborative effort between Conan Doyle Estate Ltd., Exhibits Development Group (EDG), Geoffrey M. Curley + Associates (GMCA), and OMSI, this unique and interactive experience showcases areas of forensic science that enabled Sherlock Holmes to solve crimes, as well as the historic underpinnings of author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s rich and vibrant stories.
Sherlock Holmes, a chemistry and forensics expert ahead of his time, used seemingly trivial observations of clues others missed to solve some of his era’s most mysterious crimes. His practices and techniques, created in the mind of doctor-turned-author Conan Doyle, changed the way police work was conducted, and remain in practice today. The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes features original manuscripts and period artifacts, investigative tools influenced and used by Sherlock Holmes, and interactive crime-solving opportunities. Guests will be transported into Sherlock Holmes’ London to solve a crime in a world that was being introduced to his ground-breaking methods for the first time, a world filled with innovation and experimentation.
“EDG and our world-class exhibition team are delighted to produce this major traveling exhibition for the international science and history museum community,” said Amy Noble-Seitz, founder and chief executive officer of EDG. “Sherlock Holmes is one of literature’s most fascinating characters, and we are thrilled to be working with the Conan Doyle Estate and our creative partner, GMCA to bring this to museum audiences worldwide.”
“For the Conan Doyle Estate, there has seldom ever been an undertaking as exciting as this one,” says the Estate’s U.S. representative Jon Lellenberg: “Museum visitors will not only see what in science and literature inspired Sir Arthur Conan Doyleto create Sherlock Holmes, and how Holmes investigated and solved crimes as the world’s first consulting detective, but will visit their two worlds as well, and the very rooms in which all this took place.”
Exhibition guests will learn about the practices of Sherlock Holmes, the world in which Conan Doyle drew from to develop his stories, and the history of forensic science. The galleries in the exhibition include:
- Dr. Conan Doyle’s Study – Conan Doyle, a scientifically educated physician, was a curious and tireless investigator his entire life. Guests will discover his world first as a medical student at Edinburgh University, then as an apprentice at Royal Surgeons’ Hall there, and finally as a creator of literary genius while practicing medicine in Southsea, Portsmouth, in the 1880s, and London in the early 1890s. On display will be an original manuscript, letters, and illustrations through which guests will gain perspective on the experiences that influenced Conan Doyle in creating Sherlock Holmes.
- Science and History – Sherlock Holmes solved mysteries using observation and solid scientific experimentation, something real-world detectives (police or private) had not yet embraced. Guests will participate in experiments of their own by exploring the developments in science and technology in the 1890s, developments still very relevant today. Supported by forensics expert and crime historian E. J. Wagner, author of The Science of Sherlock Holmes, the exhibition digs into real forensic studies in order to demonstrate the link between the Sherlock Holmes stories’ detective science and the world of today.
- Sherlock Holmes in Baker Street – Guests will visit Sherlock Holmes’ and Dr. Watson’s sitting-room at 221B Baker Street,London, where their investigations began and concluded – a room looming large in popular imagination around the globe ever since the first Sherlock Holmes tale A Study in Scarlet in 1887. Of it, poet Vincent Starrett said: “Here dwell together still two men of note / Who never lived and so can never die . . . Here, though the world explode, these two survive / And it is always eighteen ninety-five.”
- Become a Detective – Guests will replace the museum map with a book full of clues while hot on a trail to solve a remarkable murder. Using their own powers of observation, guests can crack a new Sherlock Holmes mystery written exclusively for this exhibition by Daniel Stashower, the acclaimed historian, award-winning Conan Doyle biographer (author ofTeller of Tales: The Life of Arthur Conan Doyle and co-editor of Arthur Conan Doyle: A Life in Letters), and author of new Sherlock Holmes stories as well.
- Culture of Sherlock – Pop culture enthusiasts will enjoy the exhibition’s final gallery, housing a robust collection of all things “Sherlockian,” ranging from vintage Sherlock Holmes-themed card games, comics, and magazines, to radio broadcasts, movie clips, and television shows. Featured are costumes worn by Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law in Warner Bros.’ current Sherlock Holmes movies set in the Victorian era, alongside costumes and props from the CBS hit television show Elementary, setting Sherlock Holmes in present day. The exhibition will offer museum guests the most comprehensive display anywhere of Sherlock Holmes in the popular imagination over the 126 years since his creation. The conclusion of the exhibition celebrates today’s real forensic scientists and their exceptional work.
Geoffrey M. Curley + Associates is the creative team behind the exhibition’s design brining the content and design into a hands-on environmental experience. Their team of award-winning theatre, exhibition, and literary experts are developing and designing this exciting international exhibition, and will keep it relevant throughout the exhibition’s anticipated seven-year tour.
“There is no other heroic character I know whose superpowers are entirely based on exceptional scientific abilities. Sherlock Holmes is more relevant and popular today than ever before.” said Geoffrey Curley, Principal of GMCA. “It is an honor to be sharing the brilliance of Conan Doyle and his beloved Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson with children, families, and adults everywhere.”