by David Mendez
As someone who is happily in a relationship, I'm not looking for reasons to put my memories in the Museum of Broken Relationships—but I'll gladly visit to view the wreckage that people have sent in to commemorate their failed courtships.
Let's look, for an example, at the story of "An Ex Axe," part of the permanent collection at MoBR:
She was the first woman that I let move in with me. All my friends thought I needed to learn to let people in more. A few months after she moved in, I was offered to travel to the US. She could not come along. At the airport we said goodbye in tears, and she was assuring me she could not survive three weeks without me. I returned after three weeks, and she said: “I fell in love with someone else. I have known her for just 4 days, but I know that she can give me everything that you cannot.”
I was banal and asked about her plans regarding our life together. The next day she still had no answer, so I kicked her out. She immediately went on holiday with her new girlfriend while her furniture stayed with me. Not knowing what to do with my anger, I finally bought this axe at Karstadt to blow off steam and to give her at least a small feeling of loss — which she obviously did not have after our break-up.
In the 14 days of her holiday, every day I axed one piece of her furniture. I kept the remains there, as an expression of my inner condition. The more her room filled with chopped furniture acquiring the look of my soul, the better I felt. Two weeks after she left, she came back for the furniture. It was neatly arranged into small heaps and fragments of wood. She took that trash and left my apartment for good. The axe was promoted to a therapy instrument.
Hot damn. I know that not every story can be of that quality—but if even a portion of them are, it's well worth the price of admission. You'll have to navigate the slippery detail that the museum is located in Croatia, but you take the good with the bad.
Of course, you could always check out the current call for donations in Boulder, Colo., where the Boulder Musuem of Contemporary Art will be showcasing an exhibit from Feb. 14 (Valentine's Day!) to May 26. You can find more info on that here.