The Museum of the Moving Image in New York City wants to celebrate the man who taught generations of kids to read, laugh and play nice with others. The Queens, N.Y.-based museum want to open a permanent Jim Henson Exhibition and they were asking for $40,000 to finish preparations.
So they launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise $40,000 to complete preparations and that target has already been met with 27 days to go. As of press, more than $59,000 has been pledged and counting.
Henson is best known for Sesame Street, The Muppet Show, Fraggle Rock, The Dark Crystal, and Labyrinth. Sections of the exhibition will be devoted to Henson’s early work for television and film in the 1950s and 60s, in which his “‘unbridled imagination, wit, and capacity for creative innovation were clearly established,” according to the Kickstarter page.
The project to feature the Muppet creator’s life’s work was first announced in 2013. It was scheduled to open in 2014, but the museum still needs money to renovate the items, which were donated to it by Henson’s family, and to create the cases that will house them.
“While Jim Henson may be best known as the inventor of The Muppets and so many other memorable characters, our exhibition takes a more holistic view of his contributions as a producer, director, innovator, and creative leader who worked with an impressive team of collaborators,” Museum of the Moving Image Executive Director Carl Goodman wrote to the page.
“In that spirit, we are honored to be working with the designers and builders at the legendary Jim Henson’s Creature Shop to restore and preserve the puppets for future generations. And we are excited to be partnering with Kickstarter on reaching our goal of presenting the new permanent Jim Henson exhibition.”
Museum of the Moving Image also plans to Henson Collection to develop a traveling version of the Henson Exhibition, which will make its debut at the Museum of Pop Culture in Seattle on May 20, 2017.
“The Arts team at Kickstarter champions projects that celebrate bold ideas and bring communities together,” said Shane Brennan, Kickstarter’s Art Engagement Strategist. “MoMI’s campaign is a great example of how a leading cultural institution can use Kickstarter to connect with Jim Henson fans around the world, and together support an exhibition that will honor the legacy of this truly visionary creator.”
The Jim Henson Exhibition at Museum of the Moving Image will feature more than 40 original puppets-including Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Elmo, Cookie Monster, the Fraggles, and a Skeksis from The Dark Crystal-as well as puppet prototypes, original character sketches, rare behind-the-scenes footage and photographs, and interactive puppetry design and performance experiences. The exhibition will be on permanent view at the Museum and will serve as a go-to destination in New York City for fans of Jim Henson from around the world. It will showcase selections from the Museum’s comprehensive collection of puppets and other artifacts related to the work of Jim Henson, donated by his family.
The Jim Henson Collection at Museum of the Moving Image includes approximately 175 historic puppets. The restoration of this important collection is an ongoing collaboration between the Museum and Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, with input from fine art conservators.