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Avatar - The Exhibition

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Expo 3253
Avatar - The Exhibition
General Information

June 4, 2011 to September 2014


Six venue tour across US and Canada

Avatar - The Exhibition was a travelling exhibition about the production of the film Avatar. It premiered on June 4, 2011 at the Experience Music Project and Science Fiction Museum (abbr. EMP|SFM) in Seattle, USA, and remained there until September 3, 2012. Thereafter, it began a tour of the US and Canada, finally closing in 2014 back in Seattle. The event was succeeded by the global exhibition in 2016.


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Jake Sully head study by Stan Winston Studios

The exhibition featured many aspects from the production of Avatar. Among the exhibits were authentic props and costumes, the motion capturing suits, a virtual camera, a lifesized AMP suit, interactive displays, concept models of characters, plants and animals, and sketches from artists that worked on the film. Visitors were able to step into a motion capturing stage and get their movements projected onto the characters of Jake Sully or Neytiri in one of two scenes, rendered in realtime.

The exhibition was initiated by James Cameron and Paul Allen (founder of EMP and co-founder of Microsoft) and was developed within a year in partnership with Twentieth Century Fox Consumer Products and James Cameron's Lightstorm Entertainment. James Cameron, director of Avatar, said “The exhibition is going to be a unique opportunity for people to learn more not only about how the film was made, but also experience Pandora in a much deeper way. Fans will be able to see in-person the workmanship behind the film… It'll create a tactile reality that'll be a good companion to having seen the movie.”

San Francisco-based Snibbe Interactive created the interactive displays for the exhibition.


Opening Day Events Edit

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Laz Alonso, Giovanni Ribisi and CCH Pounder at the actors panel

On opening day, the exhibition offered a series of special events and activities:

  • AVATAR: The Actors' Experience: Four cast member of Avatar, Michelle Rodriguez (Trudy Chacon), Giovanni Ribisi (Parker Selfridge), Laz Alonso (Tsu'tey), and CCH Pounder (Mo'at) held a panel, led by exhibition curator Brooks Peck. The actors talked about what it is like to act in a virtual world, utilizing new filmmaking technologies, and shared experiences from the set. For the end of the panel, the actors answered questions from the audience.
  • The Creation of a New World: Yuri Bartoli (Virtual Art Director), Terry Notary (Movement Choreographer), Nolan Murtha (Digital Effects Supervisor) and Glenn Derry (Virtual Production Supervisor) gave an insight on the process of making Avatar and the many facets that had to be considered.
  • Drumming Circle: Visitors were given the opportunity of performing a song in Na'vi while singing and exploring basic beats.
  • Button Making: Visitors could make buttons with Na'vi words.
  • The Science of Avatar: Visitors could test soil samples, experiment with magnets, identify minerals and learn more about the science of Avatar.
  • Sing Along Dance Along: Visitor learned and performed songs and danced to music inspired by the world of Pandora
  • Seattle Waldorf High School World Drumming Ensemble Performance


The exhibition toured through various North American venues.

Exhibition Venues
Venue Country Opens Closes
EMP Museum, Seattle WA USA 2011-06-02 2012-09-03
The Museum, Kitchener ON Canada 2012-10-11 2013-01-13
Liberty Science Centre, Jersey City NJ USA 2013-02-16 2013-05-19
Childrens Museum, Indianapolis IN USA 2013-06-22 2013-09-22
The Henry Ford, Dearborn MI USA 2013-10-26 2014-01-26
EMP Museum, Seattle WA USA 2014-03-01 ~2014-09


Start a Discussion Discussions about Avatar - The Exhibition

  • Is there a way to contact the exhibit?

    2 messages
    • The closest location to my own of this exhibit is in Michigan. After that it goes back to Seattle. Does anyone know if there's a way to cont...
    • Check the Avatar - The Exhibition article's sources section. It has a link to the EMP with contact info.
  • Avatar traveling exhibit 2013 schedule

    3 messages
    • Can you write that in a full sentence, so that we can actually understand you?
    • This sentence requires a verb (other than the one that is nominative).

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