Opening March 3, “The Reel West” explores morality, diversity and American identity as depicted in the Western film genre and how Hollywood and Westerns shape our understanding of the world around us.
The exhibit includes costumes, props, memorabilia, art and images from a century of Westerns – from early silent films to mid-20th century popular movies and TV hits to genre-bending films of recent years.
Among the interesting things visitors will see in the exhibit:
• A mask, hat, costume, gun belt and scarf worn by Clayton Moore, who portrayed the Lone Ranger.
• A costume worn by Hailee Steinfeld as Mattie Ross in the Coen Brothers’ 2010 remake of “True Grit.”
• Two hats worn by Clint Eastwood on his early 1960s TV show “Rawhide” and years later in his 1985 film “Pale Rider.”
• Hats or other costume items worn on camera by John Wayne, Tom Mix, Gene Autry, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans, James Arness and the cast of “Bonanza.”
“The Reel West” examines how early Westerns romanticized life in the West and how they overlooked or distorted the roles of women, Native Americans and Latino communities. Visitors also will learn about important historical and recent Western films that convey the diversity of the West – some more realistically, some satirically or ironically. Through its key themes, exhibit explores how Westerns have shaped Americans’ perceptions of their own national identity and how those themes in Westerns have evolved over time.
For details and dates of special programs incorporated into the exhibit, visit www.eiteljorg.org. There is no charge to visit “The Reel West” with regular admission.