As a relatively recent college graduate and (fingers crossed) a future museum professional, I probably shouldn’t be admitting this. But what is the internet for if not shameful confessionals? And here is mine: I am something of a Harry Potter fan. Now, I’m no fanatic – I don’t belong to any Harry Potter fan sites or livejournal groups (do they still have livejournal groups?). I’ve never been “sorted” by some online quiz (although I think if I were I’d probably be Slytherin, and I’m not sure what that says about my moral compass) and I certainly don’t own any house scarfs or fake scar makeup. I can, however, translate the Hogwarts motto from Latin to English (“never tickle a sleeping dragon,” ‘natch) and I figured out who RAB was about five minutes after I finished book six. My point, dear readers, is that while I may not bleed wizard, I do know from Harry Potter.
All of this brings me to Harry Potter: The Exhibition, which is currently open at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. The MSI is an interesting place – like many modern science museums, it has to straddle the divide between education and entertainment. Sometimes it does so fantastically, like in the permanent exhibit on modern farming techniques (only in the Midwest, man) and other times it misses the mark dramatically (an enormous fairytale dollhouse? Really?). So how does Harry Potter: The Exhibition measure up? Continue reading