If These Chairs Could Talk

You’ve heard the expression “If these walls could talk.” Meaning the history of the room has a story to tell. This saying comes to mind when I see the two chairs in our newest original exhibit Perception: The Illusion of Reality. If you scroll below, you’ll see the complete renovation of the chairs once used as a prop in various movies and now transformed to be a part of The Leonardo.


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Our Exhibits Manager, Meggie Troili, had a dream to have our visitors experience a virtual haircut within the new exhibit Perception. She went on a hunt for barber chairs. With a limited budget, Meggie found two chairs for sale at movie prop house. She knew they needed some work, but she had confidence in her team to bring them back to life.

Two weeks later, the chairs were completely restored! Most of the work was done in-house (meaning scrubbing, cleaning and more scrubbing). We had to outsource the reupholstering, but everything else was done by our team.

Now back to the saying “if these chairs could talk.” What’s the history of the chairs? In all honesty, we don’t know. They could have been used in a barber shop back in the 80s. – with the style of big afros, sweet mullets, big hair, well… just BIG! People may have played Madonna’s “Like a Virgin” in the background or discussed the genius of the latest movie Ferris Bueller’s Day Off or would Sam and Dianne get together on the TV show Cheers.  You can just image it!



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We obviously know they were used in movies, TV shows and/or commercials. The question is, which ones? The movie prop house was very secretive and wouldn’t release the details. Keep your eyes open, next time you watch a show where the scene takes place in a barber shop. It just might be the same chairs.

Now what can you do with the chairs today? You can experience a virtual haircut; that will literally feel like your hair is being chopped off. I know I had chills down my spine when I listened to it for the first time. You might see people jolt and shake a little as they listen to their hair falling off. Did we mention Perception uses your senses to make you think something is actually happening—gotta love illusions.

See Perception Saturday through Thursday 10am–5pm or Friday from 10am–10pm. Also, use your own perception as you Dine in the Dark with us on October 17th.  You’ll have to rely on taste, touch and smell for a dining experience you can’t see. To learn more

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Find Your Inner Mad Scientist. 

Ask questions. Be curious. We’ll have things to do! This is a museum where you touch the exhibits.