Museum of failed love offers balm for heartbreak

Wed Jan 7, 2009 12:19pm EST
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By Rina Ota

SINGAPORE (Reuters Life!) - From an empty ring box to sexy lingerie and a pair of fur-lined handcuffs, an exhibition of the relics of failed love has come to Asia, hoping to bring solace to the heartbroken.

The "Museum of Broken Relationships," which opened in Singapore on Wednesday, is a traveling display of items related to failed relationships donated by people who live in the cities the museum has visited.

Concept founders Olinka Vistica and Drazen Grubisic decided to set up the exhibit in Croatia after consoling friends over failed romances, and hope its global tour will offer people the chance to overcome the pain of heartbreak through art.

These remnants of several love affairs have so far shown in Croatia, London, Berlin, and Singapore is their first Asian stop.

"The Museum of Broken Relationships is an art concept which proceeds from the assumption that objects possess...holograms of memories and emotions, and intends with its layout to create a space of secure memory in order to preserve the heritage of broken relationships," says the exhibit's website.

"That's why it could be therapeutic."

The museum, which has actual displays as well as a virtual, online space, has everything from romantic letters to photographs to gifts given to lovers such as soft toys, but also includes unusual exhibits such as a prosthetic leg donated by a war veteran who fell in love with his physiotherapist.

In Berlin, an axe used by a woman to break up her ex-girlfriend's furniture, along with the broken furniture, was on display alongside a wedding dress and a pair of skates.   Continued...

<p>An under-knee prosthesis is displayed as a visitor attends the "Museum of Broken Relationships" exhibition during the M1 Singapore Fringe Festival 2009 January 7, 2009. The prosthesis is what remains of the former owners relationship with the social worker who helped him get the prosthesis in the first place. REUTERS/Rina Ota</p>