Tour Museums Online
If your spring and summer (and quite possibly fall) travel plans have been rudely derailed by the craziness of 2020, at least you can be a virtual traveler. Virtual museum tours have helped people travel the world and explore art and history all while stuck at home.
Our new Virtual City Tour games use those online museum tours and tools to send you to many famous museums and destinations—the newest being the Escape to London Virtual Tour Game. Meanwhile, the Around the World Scavenger Hunt sends players on a hunt for fascinating art and breathtaking vistas on five continents, and Around the World: The Asia Pacific Game focuses on places like India, Australia, New Zealand, and eastern Asia.
Many of the greatest museums on the planet, from the Museum of Modern Art in New York to the National Gallery of Australia, offer various virtual tools for seeing their exhibits online. And some of the weirdest museums do too. Here are 5 of the strangest museums we have found with virtual museum tours.
Renowned for its vast collection of eye-opening (and stomach-turning) medical oddities, the Mütter Museum at The College of Physicians of Philadelphia belongs on any and every list of weird museums. While the museum did re-open in August, you can still visit virtually. In this 24-minute video, curator Anna Dhody guides you through the museum, introducing and explaining many of the museum’s highlights, including the Soap Lady and conjoined twins Chang and Eng Bunker.
The Mütter Museum also offers a number of online exhibits. Our favorite is easily Memento Mütter, which lets you get an uncomfortably close look at some of museum’s strangest medical artifacts and human conditions.
Museum of Bad Art
This series of galleries in the Boston area promises “art too bad to be ignored,” and it certainly delivers. Marvel at several of the Museum of Bad Art’s online collections, including the MOBA Zoo (full of very bad animal art), Dopplehangers (full of very bad portraits), and the Rainbow Collection (full of very bad but very colorful art).
You want strange? Then you can’t go wrong with the Dalí Theatre-Museum, a Spanish museum dedicated inside and out to the legendary surreality of Salvador Dalí. An interactive, 3D virtual tour of the museum lets you navigate from room to room, where stunning art and surprising facts await. Don’t miss Rainy Taxi, a huge surrealist monument in the courtyard (you can see part of it above), and the fantastical Saliva-Sofa in the Mae West room on the third floor.
Museum of Jurassic Technology
What’s strange about a dinosaur museum? Not so fast, my friend. The Museum of Jurassic Tehnology in Culver City, California, is really a cabinet of curiosities, collecting unusual odds and ends that highlight what it calls the “Lower Jurassic.” (The term has no apparent meaning, and certainly no relation to dinosaurs.)
If you can handle what one assumes is a purposefully archaic presentation, their online collection features a few highlights. Read about the horn of Mary Davis of Saughall. (It was a cutaneous horn, by the way, and you can see one in the Mütter Museum video we mentioned.) Or check out the microminiatures of Hagop Sandaldjian, which were made using the individual scales of butterfly wings and other tiny materials.
Museum of Broken Relationships
What began as a goofy traveling show about break-ups has become the Museum of Broken Relationships, a popular museum both online and at physical locations in Croatia (seen here) and Los Angeles. Tour a portion of their collection virtually to find bittersweet, strange, and absolutely disgusting odes to lost love. (Does anyone else foresee a huge “Brokenships” boom coming in the wake of couples being stuck together in lockdown for months on end?)
Photo credits: Lead photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash; Chang and Eng Bunker photo via Public Domain; Dali Theatre-Museum photo by C13m3n7 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0; Museum of Broken Relationships photo by Waerfelu – Own work, CC BY 3.0