Since its opening, "BLAST OFF: SPACE TOYS AND THE AMERICAN IMAGINATIOIN" has drawn record crowds. Curated by Eugene Metcalf with the special curatorial assistance of S. Mark Young, the exhhibition presents toys made between the 1920s, when the first space toy was created, and the late 1960s, when space toys ceased to be purely fictive constructions and became a more "realistic" with the advent of the space program. The show is organized into sections. Some of these sections present different types of space toys like robots, ray guns, aliens and space helmets. Others focus on the toys created to accompany the imaginary exploits of space heroes like Buck Rogers, Dan Dare and Tom Corbett. In addition, there are numerous presentations of significant individual toys and toy groups such as a display of Major Matt Mason figures, two plastic space ports, the beautiful Bowden Spacelander Bicycle, and the famous War of the Worlds Diorama created by H. Mignot. These toys, and others, were drawn from the colections of Rick Jones, Tom Brannan, S. Mark Young, Justin Pinchot, and Metropolis Collectibles. The exhibition is accompanied by the book BLAST OFF: ROCKETS, ROBOTS, RAY GUNS AND RARITIES FROM THE GOLDEN AGE OF SPACE TOYS, the definitive study of space toys.
The gallery shots below present a few of the prominent displays in the exhibiton.