The exhibition explores ocean liners not only as means of transportation, but as “showcases of opulence, technology and social sophistication,” according to a release by PEM, by displaying almost two-hundred works of design and engineering from the mid-19th through late-20th centuries.
The large-scale traveling exhibition is co-organized with the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) in London, and features an array of pieces including paintings, sculptures, photographs, film, posters, furniture, wall panels, lighting, models, fashion, and textiles.
The architecture and design of ocean liners was a “fantasy experience,” said Dan Finamore, PEM’s Russell W. Knight curator of maritime art and history, in the release by PEM. “No form of transport was as romantic, remarkable or contested as the ocean liner and their design became a matter of national prestige.”
PEM was founded in 1799 by sea captains and merchant traders, and has collected thousands of ocean-liner related pieces since 1870. Similarly, the V&A has been collecting ship models and ocean liner-related pieces since the 19th and 20th centuries. The show will be on display at the PEM until Oct. 9.