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Press Release

New Traveling Exhibition Heading to Buffalo Museum of Science in February

Tickets on sale now for Medieval To Metal: The Art & Evolution Of The GUITAR

BUFFALO, NY  – The Buffalo Museum of Science today announced that it will welcome a new traveling exhibit, Medieval To Metal: The Art & Evolution Of The GUITAR. Developed by The National GUITAR Museum (NGM), Medieval To Metal celebrates the technological advancements and artistic developments of the guitar. The exhibit opens at the Buffalo Museum of Science on Saturday, February 13, 2021, for a limited engagement. Tickets are on sale now.

Guitars and other modern stringed instruments evolved from two ancient types of musical instruments. The origin of these instruments goes back to at least 3000 BC, the beginning of recorded history. Since the inception of the traditional guitar we’ve come to know today, guitar makers have experimented with hundreds of forms looking for the perfect blend of beauty and sound–whether it be bowls, flat surfaces, slightly curved lines, or dagger sharp angles.

Forty historical and notable objects within the exhibit detail this design and technological evolution, ranging from the intricately inlaid Moorish oud and six-foot-long Renaissance theorbo to the modern Italian design of the Eko and transparent acrylic body of California’s BC Rich guitars. Spanning centuries of design and craftsmanship, the exhibition takes visitors through the history of an object that is one of the most recognizable items on the planet.

“The guitar has been a signature element of world culture for more than 500 years. Now, visitors can explore the design history and artistry that has played a major role in the guitar’s evolution,” said HP Newquist, executive director of the NGM. “It’s hard to find anyone who hasn’t been affected by the guitar, whether as players or just fans of all types of music. And while this may be apocryphal, it’s a widely held belief that the two most recognizable man-made shapes on the planet are those of the Coca-Cola bottle and the electric guitar.”

Medieval To Metal also includes life-size photorealistic illustrations of historically important guitar designs from noted artist Gerard Huerta, and 20 photographs of acclaimed musicians and their guitars from Neil Zlozower, one of the world’s premier concert photographers.

While still operating within New York State’s mandated 25 percent capacity, Buffalo Society of Natural Sciences President and CEO Marisa Wigglesworth said she is excited that the Museum will be able to safely offer a low-risk indoor entertainment option while continuing to be a resource for informal science learning for the Buffalo Niagara region.

“It can be easy to overlook how much technology and design have formed the history of the guitar. We’re excited to explore the cultural and STEAM aspects that have influenced the story and wide-ranging designs of this iconic instrument with our visitors and members in a safe and entertaining way,” said Wigglesworth. “It is critically important that, even in these trying times, we continue our service to the WNY region by bringing in new exhibits that are both educational and entertaining.”

This is the second guitar-focused exhibition the museum has offered in recent years. The 2016 traveling exhibit GUITAR: The Instrument that Rocked the World was a different exhibition produced by NGM that focused on pop culture and the science of sound.

After a temporary closure, the Museum began its gradual reopening in July 2020 and has welcomed guests back into its second, third and fourth floor science studios to members and non-members. With the opening of Medieval To Metal, the BMS will expand its operating hours to five days a week, Wednesday through Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Entry to Medieval To Metal is included with general museum admission ($16 adults; $13 children 2-17, seniors, students and military) and free for BMS members. In order to maintain the NYS-mandated 25 percent capacity, entry is timed and all admissions must be reserved in advance online at sciencebuff.org or by calling the Museum at (716) 896-5200.

Guests are encouraged to review the latest safety guidelines before their visit on the Museum’s website at https://www.sciencebuff.org/plan-a-visit/covid-19-reopening-plan/.

For more information on the exhibit, visit https://www.sciencebuff.org/medievaltometal


The National GUITAR Museum is the first museum in the United States dedicated to the history, evolution and cultural impact of the guitar. Its touring exhibitions, launched in 2011, have been installed in more than forty different museums across the country. The organization was founded in 2009.

Rooted in the belief that science creates opportunities and shapes our world, the Buffalo Museum of Science is a non-profit educational institution dedicated to providing relevant science programming to learners of all ages in the Buffalo Niagara region. Through interactive science studios and exhibits designed for multi-generational learning, the Museum showcases its extensive collection of more than 700,000 specimens and artifacts representing all facets of the natural world with an emphasis on Western New York. With a focus on raising the science literacy in the Buffalo Niagara area and beyond, the Museum offers hands-on workshops, camps, panel discussions, guided tours and enhance learning opportunities for its guests and community. Opened in 1929 in Buffalo’s Olmsted-designed Martin Luther King, Jr. Park, the Museum recently installed its eighth interactive science studio marking the completion of the Museum’s 9-year-long transformation of its guest experience. The Buffalo Museum of Science is governed by the Buffalo Society of Natural Sciences alongside Tifft Nature Preserve in South Buffalo, a 264-acre urban wetland preserve on reclaimed former industrial land. Learn more at www.sciencebuff.org.