I’ve always found amusement park shooting galleries both alluring and somewhat nightmarish. I first visited a shooting gallery as a young child along a boardwalk in Seaside, Oregon. It was a cavernous space that resembled a diorama in a natural history museum, albeit displaying an eclectic selection of relics: a man seated at a piano, liquor bottles lining a shelf, various taxidermied animals posed on fiberglass rocks or stumps. Indoors and outdoors merged into one convoluted space, the only unifying element being the small targets affixed to each item.
“A Tribute to Arcade Shooting Galleries” perfectly captures the sensibility:
“Like some nightmarish Disney tableaux, this gallery mixes the cute woodland creatures with the stark reality of frontier living. See the pianist, forlornly plying his trade, oblivious to the reality that the saloon has disintegrated around him.
A small dog rests on a crate of high explosives… just one of nature’s creatures lured by the pianist’s bleak lament… lured to their imminent demise at your brutal hand.
Don’t reveal all your cards in one go, though: why not toy with them by first shooting a spittoon or lantern? ”
Below is documentation of a work-in-progress shooting gallery: