Space 2000 - Science Fiction Models & Memorabilia

Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History - Dec. 1, 1999Jan. 9, 2000

- Article by John T. and Stephen L.
- Photos by Roger L.

The idea for the show was to create an interesting exhibit over the Christmas break that would give kids and their parents a place to unwind for a while and take their minds off the pending change of the millennium. Our senior graphic artist, John K., was responsible for getting the show started. John and I were chatting over coffee at break time and neither knew the other liked science fiction! Once I knew he was a fanatic about the topic, we just had a gab and a half about it. From that point on, the ideas for a show gelled.

John convinced the museum administration that a collectible show over Christmas 1999, hosted by the Natural History Museum, would be of great interest to the public. Once they knew the show had an educational value they agreed to support the exhibit and we had a couple of weeks to put it together.

Some members of the Maritime Science Fiction Modelers assisted the setup of the exhibits and displays with the museum staff. They also provided many of the studio-quality models that were displayed for the duration of the show. MSFM members were on hand each weekend of the exhibit to showcase live demonstrations of scratchbuilding and basic kit model making to the public for the educational aspect, which is one of the strongest points of our museum. Art and painting seminars were conducted by MSFM's Kevin L. Kevin has done some fantastic work in the realm of sci-fi artwork.

John K. is an incurable science fiction collector and his vast collection of sci-fi memorabilia helped make this show a much more rounded display. Many of his contributions included everything from wind-up robot toys from the '30s, '40s, and '50s, to the more modern era Star Wars and Star Trek toys and collectibles. The local media response to Space 2000 was fantastic, and the exhibit was showcased on a local news program. Due to the popularity of Space 2000, the show was held over for an extra month!

Due to the overwhelming public response to the exhibit, especially by children, an annual "Kitbashing Workshop" is held by the museum in late December with assistance from the Maritime Science Fiction Modelers. Kids get acquainted with model making by kitbashing models from a table full of plastic model pieces. They get to take home their creation 
 and are able to find out more about the hobby by asking questions while they build.

The following text is taken from the Space 2000 Programme:

"As one millennium ends and a new one begins, let's take a look at how far we imagined the future over the past century.

From the intergalactic journeys of Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon, to Star Trek and Star Wars adventures. We are "beaming up" nearly 70 years of sci-fi with wonderful models, collectibles, and memorabilia. Enjoy the history of science fiction through posters, books, toy ray guns, robots, movies, games, figurines, spaceships and cards.

All ages will enjoy this collection of sci-fi paraphernalia dating from the 1930's."

Here are a few pictures from the Space 2000 exhibit at the Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History:

Many of the larger models at the Space 2000 exhibit were completely scratchbuilt. The Star Wars models were originally scratchbuilt by the Maritime Science Fiction Modelers for a hanging theatre display for the re-releases of the Star Wars Trilogy: Special Editions in early 1997.

The scene stealer at the show was an incredible 7 feet long scratchbuilt Star Trek U.S.S. Enterprise by John T. As an employee of the museum, John has developed a keen eye for detail and is a skilled artisan. The Enterprise is definitely a museum-quality piece!
The Enterprise was built at 1/130 scale with fiberglass. It is fully lit and has working navigation lights. (The Enterprise in these photos represents the model prior to an overhaul to make the model even more accurate. It now has spinning domes and flashing lights.)

In the upper left is the 1/24th scale Millennium Falcon by Rob L. It was probably the heaviest model at the exhibit and one of the most easily recognizable ships at the show.

Rob's first scratchbuilt was the Nostromo from the 'Alien' film, hanging at center. 

The TIE Fighter by Vaughn M. was a latecomer to the 1/24th Star Wars models, but perhaps the most accurate of the Star Wars models we made.
Rob's Nostromo was upscaled from the Halcyon kit and built with mostly sheet styrene. It measured almost 2 feet long.

John's Enterprise was set on a custom, motorized, rotating base with spotlight so the public could get a good look at the model from all angles.

Vaughn's X-Wing Fighter was the open winged version in the hanging display.
The closed-wing X-Wing Fighter was built by Mike H. and was also first built for the Special Edition Trilogy Exhibit.

The only non-scratchbuilt that was hanging was a Monogram kit of the Battlestar Galactica by Stephen L. 

The Nostromo and TIE Fighter can again be seen in this shot.
Stephen L. scratchbuilt the 1/670 scale Cardassian warship. It was constructed from sheet styrene and very few spare model bits. It was built to be to scale with the Monogram Voyager. It was based off the tiny Micro-Machine as the AMT kit was not then released. The Galor Class scratchbuild measured about 2.5 feet.

In front of the Falcon was a scratchbuild by Rob L. as a model for a proposed, but never produced, local sci-fi television pilot.
The Star Wars model fighters were somewhat hung in a flight formation.

Unless you got to see the exhibit firsthand, it's really difficult to appreciate the size of the models in these pictures. The Star Wars ships here are at least 2 feet long each and the Enterprise is over 7 feet long! The public's reaction to the exhibit was incredible to behold. We were very proud the show was extended an extra month due to public interest.
Another view of Vaughn's TIE Fighter and X-Wing, Rob's Nostromo.

This is an underside view of John's Enterprise. The saucer exceeds 3 feet in diameter. The nacelles are about 4 feet long each.
Some of the lighting in this area of the museum was more sympathetic than some of the photos may indicate. The shadows enhanced the details of the models particularly the minute details of the Millennium Falcon.

The self-illumination of the Enterprise was quite striking after hours, when the overhead spot lights were turned off!
This beauty shot of John's U.S.S. Enterprise was taken as a publicity shot for the Space 2000 advertising poster.
This is another shot of the Enterprise, provided by John T. The photo was taken at a science fiction/fantasy convention in Nova Scotia. Although the cabin lights weren't lit in this photo, some of the surface detailing and weathering can be seen.

For more information about the Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History, visit their website at:

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