Museum of the Moving Image announces new gallery devoted to Jim Henson

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Museum of the Moving Image, The Jim Henson Legacy, and other officials announced that the family of Jim Henson has donated nearly 400 puppets, costumes, props, and other objects to the Museum, which will build a new gallery devoted to Henson’s important and lasting creative achievements. The project, which has a fundraising goal of $5 million, is anchored by $2.75 million in funding from the City of New York for the construction of the new gallery, which is expected to open to the public in winter 2014– 2015.

Museum of the Moving Image Designed by Leeser Architecture

Museum of the Moving Image Designed by Leeser Architecture

Between 1955 and his death in 1990, Jim Henson and the beloved characters that he
and his collaborators created were responsible for some of our culture’s most
memorable moving images. Through the continuing work of The Jim Henson
Company, Sesame Workshop, and The Walt Disney Company, Henson’s creations
continue to delight millions around the globe.

The donation to the Museum includes puppets, costumes, props, and other artifacts
representing every major film and television production on which Henson played a key
creative role during his lifetime, including Sam and Friends, The Muppet Show,
Sesame Street, Fraggle Rock, The Dark Crystal, and Labyrinth. At the heart of the
collection are approximately 200 puppets, including Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy,
Elmo, Ernie, Bert, Count von Count, Gobo Fraggle, the Swedish Chef, and Statler and

The collection will form the basis of a dynamic visitor experience housed in a new
2,200-square-foot gallery on the Museum’s second floor, adjacent to its core
exhibition, Behind the Screen. Artifacts from the Henson family donation will be
presented along with character sketches, storyboards, and scripts from The Jim
Henson Company archive, as well as with film and television clips, behind-the-scenes
footage, and interactive experiences.

Complementing the Henson exhibition and taking place throughout the Museum will
be a wide range of ongoing programs, including curriculum-based education programs
for school groups, continuous screenings in the Museum’s Tut’s Fever theater located
next to the new gallery, and live events featuring those who worked with and carry on
the legacy of Jim Henson.

The Henson gallery and exhibition are the signature components of the Museum’s 25th
anniversary campaign—the Museum opened to the public in 1988—for which $6
million of a $10 million goal has already been raised.