sates the appetite of the hordes of fanatics out there. It‘s also that it takes something so intemationally familiar in celluloid form and makes it flesh. Well fur. plastic or aluminium. Finally coming face-to-face with Chewbacca or Yoda is a thrill akin to that captivating moment when they first appeared on screen.
The Finnish capital was the third venue of a proposed seven-city tour which has taken in London‘s Barbican (it was the most attended exhibition in the building's history) and the Museum of Photography. Film and Television in Bradford. A visit to Paris is planned for the end of 2002 as well as exhibitions in Spain and Germany for 2003.
The scale and longevity of this exhibition is to be expected. Star Wars is. after all. the Coca-Cola of movies. the most recognisable cinema brand ever. partly because it invented the whole concept of movie merchandising. The embryonic idea of creating some small plastic figures of the leading
dozen characters mushroomed into the greatest single franchise ever.
Thankfully. The Art Of Star Wars does not focus on the merchandising: if it had done. we'd have seen it all before. As the name suggests. it‘s about the creative process and the images. style and icons that emerged from the films. Many exhibits follow the creative line from initial pencil sketch imaginings through development to the finished item. be it a character. costume. spacecraft or landscape. The Art ()fStar Wars illustrates how much the styles and looks from the films have permeated into design culture as well as pop culture.
()ne added feature that the exhibition in Edinburgh will have is the inclusion of exclusive items from the new film. Star Wars Episode 1/: Attack Of The Clones (to give it its full audacious title) is not released until lo May but the City Art Centre will be the home of up to 40 new exhibits. all of which are taken from Episode [1.
Typically secretive. verging on the paranoid. Lucasfilm will not even reveal to the curators of the exhibition what the new items will be: they won‘t know until they are lifted out of the crates from America. The rumours are rife on the intemet. but even the official sites give nothing away. The sad thing is that fans can access previews of many items of spin—off merchandising for the films. but little detail about the actual plot.
Some may turn their nose up at The Art ()fStar Wars as
populist. but if something gets people into art galleries be it Boba Fett and ewoks rather than old masters. then surely it‘s still a good thing‘.’
The Art Of Star Wars is at the City Art Centre, Edinburgh, Sat 23 Mar-Sun 8 Sep
From sketch to screen: the exhibition traces the vision of George Lucas and his team from genesis to finished article
‘. 28 Matt 2002 THE LIST 29