Stanley Kubrick: The Exhibition at the Contemporary Jewish Museum

Originally published in the Marina Times San Francisco in July 2016

“All you have to do is hear the name, or read it on a page, and a whole world opens up before your eyes. A vast, mysterious world, unlike any other in the history of cinema.” – Martin Scorsese

Beginning June 30th, The Contemporary Jewish Museum presents the first exhibition dedicated to the life and work of Stanley Kubrick. From his time as a teenage photographer for LOOK magazine through his pioneering films like Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964), 2001: A Space Odyssey (1965-68) and A Clockwork Orange (1971), the exhibition provides a detailed journey into the tools, machinations and methods of the legendary director.

Materials from Kubrick’s estate, inaccessible until 2003, will be on display. Nearly 800 objects include annotated screenplays, production photography, lenses and cameras, set models, costumes and props, some of which are also on loan from international and private collections. Costumes include the Starchild and the ape from 2001: A Space Odyssey, the blue dresses belonging to the twin sisters in The Shining (1980), the survival kit from Dr. Strangelove, and the “Born to Kill” helmet of Private Joker from Full Metal Jacket (1987). Correspondence, sketches, plans and other set objects draw the public into the processes of a meticulous multidisciplinary artist. See Kubrick’s Bell & Howell Eyemo camera that he used to film Killer’s Kiss (1955), the Mitchell BNC camera, and the Zeiss f0.7 lens developed for NASA which was used for shooting candlelight scenes in Barry Lyndon (1975). Cinema fans can also attend a 30- minute audiovisual presentation explaining Kubrick’s use of music in his films and a picture show retracing his biography along with clips from films and documentary footage.

Other related events include The Life and Legend of Stanley Kubrick on June 30. This discussion about the personal and professional life of the director includes Jan Harlan, Kubrick’s executive producer from Barry Lyndon onwards; Tim Heptner, curator at Deutsches Filmmuseum; Katharina Kubrick, the filmmaker’s stepdaughter and Hans-Peter Reichmann, head of collections at Deutsches Filmmuseum. On July 1, The Gallery Chat invites the public to hear anecdotes from Jan Harlan, who acted as Kubrick’s executive producer on major films including The Shining and Eyes Wide Shut. Several additional events related to the exhibit run through the end of the exhibit on October 30, 2016, and most are free with museum admission.

Film fans can at last step into the Korova Milk Bar from A Clockwork Orange, travel through outer space through the sets of 2001: A Space Odyssey, or imagine themselves in the period costumes of Barry Lyndon or on the battlefields of Full Metal Jacket. This exhibit offers a one of a kind immersive adventure into Kubrick’s world.

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