Only the Lonely – Museums that are Out of the Ordinary

This is a series to celebrate museums around the world that are special in some way: perhaps because they focus on an unexpected topic,  or offer a different approach ito a familiar subject or are small and quirky and march to a different drum beat. 

The Museum Of Broken Relationships in Zagreb, Croatia

This is an OMG out of the ordinary museum. And it’s not a cheap gimmick or a gone tomorrow pop-up you’ll never hear of again. It’s respected in the world of museums and exists in both a virtual and physical form with a mission to explore the collective misery of heartache across the world. Exhibits include video confessionals, romantic memories gone sour and, in one case, an ax that a woman used to dismantle her ex’s furniture when she was jilted.

And you can be part of it…

You can submitt your story of heartache to their virtual online collection or send a relevant physical item (and the story that goes with it) directly to their permanent collection. You can also choose to time-lock it and the curartors will keep it sealed until you think it’s ok to release it to the wider world.

Earlier this year Australian artist Colin Black created a soundscape to record  the music of broken promises, hearts breaking and hearts healing.

The Museum was set up in 2006 and four years later won the EMYA Kenneth Hudson Award as the most innovative and daring museum project in Europe.

Museum shop
The Museum Shop by Mare Milin

Click HERE to vist the Museum online

The physical Museum is permanently located in the baroque Kulmer Palace in the Upper Town – a historical part of Zagreb, the capital of Croatia.  It’s#9 of 225 things to do in Zagreb on tripadvisor and 83% of reviewers thought it was excellent or very good.  The 2% of commentators who called it terrible, included phrases like felt like slitting my wrists afterwards and preferred the Torture Museum.

But they are in the minority and shouldn’t have the last word.  Here’s what the Guest Relations Manager said to a vistor who thought it was all pretty pathetic.

…We understand not everyone will like the concept of our museum but we believe that people who contributed to our museum, by sharing their story and donating their item, have found some kind of closure, the strength to move on and make a fresh start for themselves. We certainly wouldn’t call them pathetic as it takes a lot of strength to face your problems, deal with them and in the end to move on to something better….
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