When you're a kid, museums tend to range from mildly boring to incredibly boring vacation ruiners. Well, as part of our continuing mission to prove that things could always be worse, here are some museums that will have you sleeping with a nightlight for the next few years.
#6. The Hair Cave
Those people are standing in a cave, but those aren't stalactites. That, dear readers, is human hair.
You are looking at the personal collection of Turkish potter Chez Galip. And not only is he not a serial killer, as far as anyone knows, but he happily shares his collection of 16,000 locks of hair with the world.
In his cave.
His human hair cave.
No, that's not a metaphor.
The "collecting" began in 1979, when Galip thought he might boost participation in the pottery courses he taught in his shop above the cave ... by collecting hair samples from participants and hanging them on the cave wall beneath the studio. We can only take his word that this was actually how he procured all those samples and that there aren't 16,000 shriveled heads silently screaming for release from their cavernous coffins.
Colored note cards would have looked a lot less like dessicated scalp.
Undaunted by the lack of escape routes, women apparently continue to shed a lock for Galip's collection to this day. And if a visitor sees a tress that tickles his creep fancy, he might be able to find the owner. For you see, Galip thoughtfully COLLECTED ADDRESSES WITH EACH LOCK OF HAIR.
#5. Seodaemun Prison History Museum
If there's one building that has every right to be haunted, it's the Seodaemun Prison complex in Seoul.
From 1908 to 1945, the colonial Japanese government used Seodaemun to hold and torture dissenters. And then following Japan's defeat in WWII, the South Korean government used the buildings to hold their own inmates before reopening the building as a museum in 1992. So with every step you take at Seodaemun, you are literally walking across the collective agony of almost a century's worth of damned souls. Seodaemun's curators apparently found that palpable human anguish to be underwhelming, which is why they went one step further and put together elaborate displays like this one:
That man's torturing those women by staining their dresses with ketchup!
It's like they reimagined torture through the eyes of Team America: World Police. The museum is chock-full of life-size wax figure displays, such as red hot chili water being forced down an inmate's nose, bamboo shoots being thrust under prisoners' fingernails and old fashioned hangings.
"We call this the gravitea bong."
Oh, and don't imagine for one second that this is a strictly 18 and up venue just because of all the explicit torture dioramas. Kids are more than welcome to experience South Korea's past, warts and all!
Yeah, we had the same reaction as the girl on the left when we noticed the fucking blood stains.
#4. Gallery of Paleontology and Compared Anatomy
Have you ever wondered what Noah's Ark would have looked like if it got nuked on Judgement Day? Well, there's your answer.
The Gallery of Paleontology and Compared Anatomy is part of the family of museums that make up the French Natural History Museum. Seen from a distance or its balcony, the Gallery looks like a mundane, orderly collection of fossils chronicling evolution's march through time. Nothing too outrageous until -- GOOD LORD. Is that an inter-primate rape scene?!
OK, who gave Stanley Kubrick modeling clay?
Sure is! Notice the lusty glee of the little one on the right. But also the orangutan strangling the human to death. Notice that this unfortunate human's last horrific moments are ending with every terrible circumstance possible: strangled by an orangutan while his kid watched? Check. Naked? Check. Frozen in stone for all eternity to be gawked at by children? Check.
We're just getting started. We have to imagine it's the "Compared Anatomy" portion of the gallery that is responsible for things like this:
"Rub your face in that. You can really feel a similarity to the mutilated dog display."
Because how can you properly compare animals unless they've been flayed of all their skin and sprawled out like a uptown lady waiting for her Brazilian wax? Oh, and just to keep things from getting weird, you might as well replace internal organs with wax fruit so the orangutan is a cornucopia of sorts.
Like many of us, the creators of the the museum wondered what underdeveloped human fetuses looked like if they were ripped from their mother's bodies, decomposed, then propped up for our entertainment. Especially if the open-skulled trio could be made to look like they're having a GREAT time, like we just caught them mid-guffaw.
"Man, that 'you've really lost weight' joke never gets old!"
Meanwhile, here's a happy pod of skeletonized whales, that appear to be about to feast on Han Solo frozen in carbonite:
Above: The best idea George Lucas ever cut.
There's a reason why we mentioned Noah's Ark in the beginning. Have you ever wondered what happens to zoo animals when they die? Well, in the 1890s, the French used the Jardin des Plantes Zoo's pile of dead animal remains for many of the exhibits in The Gallery of Paleontology and Compared Anatomy. Then they decided the only leader for such a parade of the undead is a man who has shed his skin like an annoying fleshy, pink encumbrance.
"Chad, we need to talk to you about your circumcision technique."