This Belongs in a Museum

Once called the "Stephen Fry of Museum Blogging," this tumblog, written by a frustrated museologist, is dedicated to the small, random museums and weird attractions of the world. Always informative, usually funny, sometimes offensive.

Bringing you museum-approved grammatical errors and typos since 2010.

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Posts tagged "Museum"

We’ve covered Clown Museums before here at This Belongs In A Museum. Not a surprise the Guinness World Record for “Largest Clown Collection” belongs to Ortys Clownmuseum in Germany. Then there’s the Klown Doll Museum in Nebraska of all places. And let’s not forget John Wayne Gacy’s clown paintings at the Museum of Bad Art. But the most random clown-related collection of all belongs to Grampa Jerry’s Clown Museum in Arriba, 100 miles east of Denver, Colorado. It first opened in the early 1990s in Sterling, a town located about two hours away from Arriba. Jerry Eder, who I’m not sure is actually a grandfather, has accumulated over 3,000 clown items from clown dolls and clown music boxes to clown paintings and clown ceramics. There is an old bank featuring a clown who will eat your nickels, a glow-in-the-dark clown stick-on tattoo, a clown made from a man’s necktie and of course Jerry’s first clown…a picture that was displayed on his childhood chalkboard. And if you’re coulrophobic as well as claustrophobic, then I suggest you skip visiting Jerry’s museum. Why? Because this gigantic clown collection is displayed in his tiny, cramped pink shed. Jerry left the world in 2010, so the museum is now run by his wife, Dale Ann, who of course also collects clowns.

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If he was still with us, today would have been Johnny Cash’s 82nd birthday. Considering Valentine’s Day was nearly two weeks ago, let’s honour Johnny’s memory (and his wife June’s, who died four months before him) with a Valentine he gave her back in 1998. It’s on display at the Johnny Cash Museum in Nashville, which opened two years ago. Not only is this museum on my must-see list, but I will definitely be listening to “The Man in Black” all day today, and I suggest you do the same.

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If you plan to visit the city of Tomar in Portugal, make sure not to bring any pyromaniacs with you. Located south of the old town in the former Convento de Sao Francisco is the Matchbox Museum (or the Aquiles da Mota Lima Museum of Matches). Believe it or not, this is Europe’s second largest collection of anything in the world. Some 60,000 items (with 43,000 matchboxes which still hold their original contents) from more than 100 countries are meticulously arranged in display cases over three large rooms. The collection, which was donated to Tomar in 1980, was started by phillumenist Aquiles Da Mota Lima. A sign outside the museum claims it provides “a singular description of universal history and culture”, which is probably true as eye-catching matchboxes have been replaced with easily disposable lighters. And you don’t need to be a smoker to appreciate this museum’s contents with its changing graphic designs of imagery and fonts.

Not only is this museum a “striking” place (sorry, bad pun), but it’s also absolutely FREE!


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As an only lonely child of the 1980s with a parent who literally worked around the clock, let’s just say, I grew up watching a lot of television. But that’s probably the exact same childhood of anyone born after, say, 1965. One of my earliest memories of being at a cinema was seeing a Rainbow Brite film (I am guessing it’s this distinguished award-winning feature). Anyway, a woman about six months older than me is stuck in a past filled with cartoon rainbows. Katy Cartee Haile turned her house in North Carolina into a museum for her favourite childhood toy, Rainbow Brite. This reminds me of the guy who runs a Beetlejuice Museum in his Hell’s Kitchen Apartment or that Toilet Seat Art Museum in a Texas garage or the 28,000 items of the Bunny Museum stuffed into a California house or the Troll Museum in some chick’s Lower East Side walk-up.

In case you’re unfamiliar with the story, it’s about a little girl named Wisp who brings colour into the world. After receiving her first doll for her fifth birthday, Katy was hooked and has since collected over 1,500 items (here’s a PDF if you have time to kill), which are displayed at her Rainbow Land Museum. Although no visitors/fanatics have yet to pay a visit, Katy says "all are welcome!" Up a rainbow painted staircase, there is a 500 square foot room of blue sky walls where glass cabinets and shelves display rare toys and collectibles. A favourite item is a prototype 12″ Dress Up Rainbow Brite doll. An extra guest bedroom has her Rainbow Brite “linen collection”. And yes, I believe I slept with that duvet cover (but unfortunately, I did not have the matching curtains). And that’s not it. Back in 1997, Katy’s obsession led her to create rainbowbrite.net and with it, a community of like-minded individuals from around the world. She also collects the new Masters of the Universe Classics line to go along with a small vintage He-Man collection (Hey, but what about She-Ra???).

And yes, you might have already seen this story on BuzzFeed. Sorry but this tumblr is sometimes stuck in the past. Just like Katy.

(Images from Katy’s Flickr and Twitter)

Sorry to disappoint any ornamental plant fans out there, but the Rose Museum is actually named after the Susan and Elihu Rose Foundation, which helps support a small museum dedicated to the history of Carnegie Hall. Opened in 1991 as part of the 100th anniversary, the museum displays its permanent archives and more than a century of concert programs along with a series of rotating exhibits. Some of its more interesting items include a ring owned by Beethoven, a pair of Johannes Brahms’ eyeglasses, one of Benny Goodman’s clarinets, a sequined jacket worn by Judy Garland and the trowel used in laying the cornerstone of Carnegie Hall. The museum also focuses on the Hall’s uncertain future that followed the growth of Lincoln Center and the sale of Carnegie Hall in the late 1950s, which led to the campaign preservation spearheaded by Isaac Stern and New York City’s purchase of the Hall for a sum of $5 million (almost $40 million in today’s money). And speaking of dollars and cents, concerts at Carnegie Hall might not be cheap, but it’s museum certainly is…because it’s FREE!

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