This spring, the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum will host a special temporary exhibition of the immersive art installation “The Barmecide Feast,” a fully realized, full-scale reflection of the iconic, neo-classical hotel room from the penultimate scene of Stanley Kubrick’s and Arthur C. Clarke’s landmark film, 2001: A Space Odyssey. Open to the public April 8–May 28, the installation will be the centerpiece of the museum’s celebration of the film’s 50th anniversary.
“The Barmecide Feast” was conceived by Hong Kong-based British artist Simon Birch, and built with help from Paul Kember of KplusK Associates architectural firm. Two of Kember’s uncles worked as draftsmen on 2001, designing and drawing the painstakingly detailed original set. Museum visitors will be able to enter the recreated room in small groups for short periods to experience the surreal environment depicted in the film. For full information about the exhibit, visit s.si.edu/2001.
The public will get its first chance to see the installation as part of the museum’s Yuri’s Night celebration, a ticketed, 21-and-over evening event presented with Brightest Young Things Saturday, April 7. For more information about that event, visit https://airandspace.si.edu/events/2001-space-party.
A full slate of events and programs exploring the history of the future as seen through the lens and pens of Kubrick and Clarke will be announced in April.
2001: A Space Odyssey premiered April 2, 1968, a short distance from the museum, at Washington, D.C.’s Uptown Theater, and went on to become the highest grossing film of the year. It earned an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects, and it was added to the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress in 1991. In 2015, a collection of Clarke’s papers, tapes and personal items was donated to the museum, including early drafts of 2001.
The National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is located in Chantilly, Va., near Washington Dulles International Airport. The museum building on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., is located at Sixth Street and Independence Avenue S.W. Both facilities are open daily from 10 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. (closed Dec. 25). Admission is free, but there is a $15 fee for parking before 4 p.m. at the Udvar-Hazy Center.
# # #