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Kites, Wings,

& Other Flying Things

Pasadena’s History of Flight through Science, Art, & Design


Wednesday, November20, 2013 to Saturday, April 19, 2014



Image: Knabenshue dirigible over the Raymond Hotel. Courtesy PMH Archives (A9-1d)

From the kite through the space age, Kites, Wings & Other Flying Things examines the artistry and engineering behind rapidly advancing aeronautical technologies, as well as Pasadena’s key place in the story of flight. 

From gliders and dirigibles to rockets and space exploration, California was the nexus of the development of flight in the 20th century.  Southern California, including the City of Pasadena, was indelibly marked by this industry.  Since the early 1900s, Pasadena has enthusiastically embraced aeronautics, through eager spectators, visionary inventors, daring aviators, and savvy entrepreneurs.  An aviation timeline, illustrated with images from the Museum's vast collection of photographs, explores the development of this quintessentially twentieth-century industry from Pasadena's point of view.  Related artifacts and ephemera documenting the industry are also on display.

Long before the Industrial Revolution made modern aerospace technology possible, early aspiration of flight began with the kite, an item that epitomizes the intersection of science and artistry.  As weapons during war and as recreation during peacetime, they have inspired leaps of the imagination and humankind’s leap into aviation. Glen Rothstein, the local representative of the American Kitefliers Association, has curated a selection of kites on loan from kite makers and collectors, including Dorine Imbach, Mikio Toki, and Tyrus Wong.



Los Angeles Early Aviation Lecture with Fred Culick & Kenneth Pauley

Tuesday, January 28, 6:30 pm

Click here for more information.



“Flights of Fancy” Family Free Day

April 6, 2014






Exhibit Hours

12:00 - 5:00 pm Wednesdays - Sundays

Please Note: the Exhibition will be open on Wednesday, April 2, 2014,

however the Museum Parking Lot will be unavailable to visitors;

Please park on Walnut St.

Exhibit Admission

$7 General; $6 Students & Seniors; Members & Children under 12 Free



This exhibition is made possible in part by the Pasadena Arts & Culture Commission and the City of Pasadena Cultural Affairs Division.




Exhibition Committee

Betsy Behny
Robert Bennett
Larry Dumas
Sid Gally
Daniel MacPherson
Jason Natanson
Yuny Parada
Loren Pluth
Glen Rothstein
Anita Sohus
Wayne Wilson




470 West Walnut Street ~ Pasadena, CA 91103 ~ Ph 626.577.1660 ~ Fax 626.577.1662 ~