Whenever I enter a new a city, I’m always tempted to make a beeline right for the museums. Art, science, anything – I’ve loved all museums equally ever since I was little. I grew up very near Washington, D.C., where there are a ton of free, high-quality museums, so I suppose it’s no mystery as to how I first became attracted to them. They’re a place of wonder, but also a public space that affords quiet contemplation. It can be truly magical be in a room with several other strangers, standing and wondering about the brilliance of Michelangelo, or the ancient bones of our dinosaur predecessors, or at the world’s largest diamond. It’s the shared meditative experience that can really bring people together.
It can be a little unsettling when your subject of contemplation seems to be starting right back.
Recently, we students up in Montreal took a shared trip to a wax museum, Grevin Montreal. It was a truly remarkable experience, one that allowed us to pretend to rub shoulders with real celebrities. Or, perhaps, to really rub shoulders with pretend celebrities! Either way, we were all floored by the life-like qualities the wax figures exhibited. The detail in the face and posture, the expressiveness of their poses, and, surprisingly, the spark of life that seemed to sit in their eyes.
We truly had an all-star cast before us as we explored the museum. We were all extremely excited to see the likes of Marilyn Monroe, Barak Obama, Mahatma Gandhi, and even (brace yourself) Samuel de Champlain! Yes, they had a wax figure of the namesake of our very school! They have a statue of this guy on the Burlington campus that I walk by every day on the way to lunch, and here he was, in the flesh (so to speak)! We were all so excited, we took a group photo, imagining ourselves exploring right there beside him.
Soon, we came across a section of the museum that we hadn’t really expected, and that was of striking relevance to our mostly-game-major-oriented class. They had a small hallway that contained a wax statue of Adam Jensen, the protagonist of the game Deus Ex: Human Revolution, the most recent installment in the long-running Deus Ex franchise of games. Deus Ex: Human Revolution was developed by Eidos, a studio that sits right here in Montreal, so I suppose it’s no surprise that they’d want to honor a piece of Montreal culture.
Finally, the museum opened into a huge ballroom, filled with contemporary celebrities. George Clooney, Ryan Gosling, and Nicholas Cage. We all lived out our celebrity fantasies, partying and mingling, until we had finally had our fill. To any who plan to visit Montreal, and to any who enjoy museums as much as I do, don’t miss the opportunity to check this place out!
– Scott Barrett, Game Programming Major, Official Blogger, Fall 2014