- The Magazine
- Current Issue
- Events & Shows
- Web Extras
- Yellow Pages
Reno’s National Automobile Museum dedicates its newest exhibit to gorgeous gearheads.
Photo: Adam Robertson
It can be hard to tolerate the salesperson selling you the car, but who doesn’t like the beautiful woman that tells you all about it at the shows? The National Automobile Museum, in Reno, has a new exhibit all about these gorgeous gearheads.
In March, the Auto Museum opened its Sirens of Chrome exhibit with a reception and a talk by Margery Krevsky, author of Sirens of Chrome: The Enduring Allure of Auto Show Models and the “queen bee of car show models,” according to Forbes. This is the first book ever written about the models.
The event began with remarks by Jackie Frady, president and executive director of the museum. She welcomed members, their families, and VIPs and introduced the board of directors as well as the evening’s special guest.
During her presentation, Krevsky explained topics and trivia about the history of car shows and their models:
• Sirens of chrome refers to the models, male and female, that work at car shows. They are run through rigorous training on the cars that they will represent and their specifications. The model is a product specialist and knows all about the car. During Krevsky’s presentation, an anecdote was related that, in 1982—for the first time at an auto show—a Cadillac model demonstrated how to completely disassemble, and reassemble, the car’s engine on her own.
• The model’s costumes are designed around the specific cars they represent. During the event, two women modeled costumes—from Krevsky’s own collection—representing the 1960 Pontiac Trans Am and the 1980 Pontiac Firebird with pictures of the cars.
• At first, people who were considered trustworthy or publicaly important were used to represent cars—in 1900, during one of the first car shows, a doctor and his family stood with the car and testified on its reliability. It wasn’t until 1939 that trained models were implemented.
At the end of her presentation, Krevsky signed copies of her book. The book contains pictures, in color and black and white, of auto show models from various years over the course of the last century along with a description of each picture and its significance.
The Sirens of Chrome exhibit is held in the Auto Museum’s changing exhibit gallery, near the main entrance to the galleries. The central feature is an orange 1941 Chrysler with a mannequin standing next to it dressed in a complimentary outfit.
Around the room are other car show costumes—provided by Karen Burns Productions of Reno—including one resembling a futuristic space suit, and plaques of historic information about car show models—such as some of the dangers they face: one model almost got her leg bitten off by a lion—and pictures and posters from actual car shows.
The exhibit is fascinating and full of interesting information. It really gives a unique behind-the-scenes look at who the models are and what they do. Sirens of Chrome will be on display until October 16.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
National Automobile Museum
10 S. Lake St., Reno, NV 89501