Today is 9-10-11! Kinda had to be an amazing day with a pattern like that right?
Well, you are absolutey right!!! We went to the MOMI today for “Jim Henson’s Fantastic World” and it was so fantastic I can barely put it into words. Oh and we’re MOMI members now so yeah, I’ll be checking the exhibit out again and again before it closes in January 2012.
It was a chance to read a creative genius’ notes and examine his sketches and renderings from childhood all the way to see how he developed and grew and how success comes with a lot of rejection peppered in but “ridiculous optimism” is always essential.
This quote stuck out for me:
I believe that we form our own lives, that we create our own reality, and that everything works out for the best. I know I drive some people crazy with what seems to be ridiculous optimism, but it has always worked out for me. – Jim Henson
There were small children there, I hope they enjoy the simple and positive messages Jim Henson wanted to put out there for them. At one point in a video that was playing on a loop he was accepting an award for who-knows-what and in his speech he reminded the audience that with the power of putting things on TV and in front of young minds comes responsibility to consider what it is they are putting out there. He said it so much better but you get the idea. In his ambition and genius he never lost sight of his audience and the power he could wield with it. There were many examples and video of how he used his muppets to sell products like starch and coffee and only one where he used them to sell toys. The inscription explained that after that commercial he refused to ever pander to children in that way again simply to sell them toys. He realized it diluted the message I suppose and that’s not to say that The Muppets and Sesame Street or Fraggle Rock haven’t made their share of cash over the years selling toys and trinkets, I’m sure they have. I respected the way he stepped away from his standard muppets and made more lifelike ones that shared little or no physical resemblance to those that catered to children when he wanted to cover more adult tones.
I especially LOVED reading his notes on story boards he drew himself and seeing how he scratched things out and reworked them just like the rest of us again and again (only he of course ended up with a lot more diamonds than many of us in his creative exercises).
Hearing his voice on various talk shows and interviews sprinkled through out the exhibit was like a warm and fuzzy muppet hug. I didn’t go into the MOMI today expecting the takeaway I got. I thought I’d see some muppets in person and I don’t know what else, maybe sketches but this was so much more. I don’t know where the touring exhibit is going when it leaves Astoria but I hope you (whomever you might be) get to see it here or there or anywhere.
I’ll update this post to add a photo or two later (so check back tomorrow)