Went yesterday to the Amsterdam/New Amsterdam: The Worlds of Henry Hudson show at the Museum of the City of New York (5th ave at 103rd st). Some really fantastic stuff, mostly from the Maritime Museum in Amsterdam. There’s a model’s of Hudson’s ship, the Half-Moon, some great atlas & other books, a canon recovered from underwater, clothing, one sword and part of another…
The exhibition used a lot of reproductions and also projected images from maps on the wall, so that they could show more material. There were several audio clips, one of a Dutch sea-chantey. Navigational tools included a log line, magnetic and geometric compasses, and a gorgeous pair of 17c globes.
But probably the most interesting part of the show was the explicit connection between the 70-foot long space of the exhibition hall and the 70-foot long ship on which Hudson sailed upriver. Two “sails” flew overhead, and the center of the gallery space was framed in with dark wood panels so that you felt you were on a (small) ocean-going ship. A great way to bring the material into the lives of the audience.
Though the truth is that my daughter loved the 19c dollhouses upstairs more than even the 17c tiles that showed Dutch children at play.