Untold Stories: Ships

On the Seas

We asked guests what they were curious about in the realm of maritime science and sea power lore. The Museum team then made many alternative “Bubble Diagrams” showing how different story themes could fit into the actual gallery space. Once we settled on the best arrangement, our Exhibition Designer created the first of many CAD drawings to accurately fit all our models in 3D space.

Our Graphic Designer began exploring visual looks to anchor the experience and make it set sail visually. No one wants to look at a “white bread” exhibit, when rich colors are no more expensive to produce! Layering the information on text panels with illustrations helped “show and tell” the stories behind the models.

We hired professional conservators, whose experience includes saving ancient frescoes and paintings, to carefully, scientifically and reversibly clean and mend the models that needed healing.

We brought in professional model builders to create new objects including: diorama scenes for Columbus’ Fleet, the Sovereign of the Seas, the Graving Dock and the Panamax container ship; New models of racing yachts and catamarans; Marconi’s Elettra research ship; modern fishing boats, polar research vessels and more.

The Ships gallery reopened in November 2016. One encouraging indication is the average visitor spends a lot more time exploring the gallery than they did before we revived it. We hope you can join us on your next MSI cruise and take the wheel on the high seas.