Immediately following the end of World War II in 1945, airlines and passengers benefited from a surplus of inexpensive, advanced propeller-driven transport aircraft, or “propliners.” Over the next fifteen years, commercial aviation expanded rapidly as airlines persistently requested improved propliner designs to lower costs, attract new customers, and gain advantages over competitors.
In meeting these demands the manufacturers of North America and Europe developed increasingly superior aircraft.
These included the jet-powered turboprop airliners that flew successively faster, higher, and farther. Most members of the ARTKABINETT collecter network are too young to recall this early and golden age of passanger travel. However, this important exhbition offers the opportunity to understand these wonderful machines.
Making scale models of these airliners was an important part of the design, manufacturing, and marketing process during this period. Crafted by in-house model shops or independent model makers, they represented the new designs in miniature for convenient three-dimensional analysis.
Accurately painted livery schemes on the models helped the airlines to imagine the new airliner operating within their fleet. Carriers also commissioned the making of models to promote their improved services in airline offices and travel agencies.
During the late 1940s and early 1950s, they were usually made of sheet or cast metal and complemented with metal bases often formed into unique streamline shapes.
By the late 1950s, models began to be produced from plastic, which was easier to mold into intricate shapes and reflected the proliferation of new synthetic materials.
These models represent the age of postwar propliners, which lasted until the 1960s when faster, more fuel-efficient and propeller-less turbojet airliners began to supersede them. They are from the collection of Anthony J. Lawler, an aviation industry professional and avid airplane model collector since first seeing the De Havilland Comet — the world’s first jetliner — fly over his boyhood home in Rhodesia.
Mr. Lawler has spent decades assembling one of the finest collections of scale airliner display models, most of which were acquired while working as a senior sales representative for Airbus North America during the 1980s and 1990s.
His collection spans a century of commercial aviation design innovation. The exhibition is on view to all Airport visitors from June 4th to December 4th.
The SFO Museum program was established by the Airport Commission in 1980 for the purposes of humanizing the Airport environment, providing visibility for the unique cultural life of San Francisco, and providing educational services for the traveling public.
The Museum was granted initial accreditation from the American Association of Museums in 1999, reaccredited in 2005, and has the distinction of being the only accredited museum in an airport.
Today, SFO Museum features approximately twenty galleries throughout the Airport terminals displaying a rotating schedule of art, history, science, and cultural exhibitions, as well as the San Francisco Airport Commission Aviation Library and Louis A. Turpen Aviation Museum, a permanent collection dedicated to the history of commercial aviation.
The San Francisco Airport Commission Aviation Library and Louis A. Turpen Aviation Museum provides unique opportunities for learning about the development of commercial aviation and the role it plays in our everyday lives.
Located in the International Terminal, it is an architectural adaptation of the Airport's 1930s passenger lobby.
The collection focuses on air transport with an emphasis on the West Coast and the Pacific region. Exhibitions, research services, and educational programs are offered to the public free of charge.
Visit the museum's website at ... http://www.flysfo.com/museum