It houses mummified babies, two-headed sheep and mermaids and is opening its doors to the public this week.
The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities in Hackney has received generous public donations to make it the UK’s only curiosity museum. It will open on Friday November 7.
The museum is a project by The Last Tuesday Society, an interdisciplinary art movement founded by artist Viktor Wynd. Over £16,000 has been raised during the last month to complete the venture using the American site Kickstarter, the world’s largest funding platform for creative projects.
Wynd expressed his delight at donations exceeding the target of £10,000. He said: “We are over the moon that so many people have got so excited and pledged so much”.
To encourage the public to donate, the museum promised an eclectic variety of rewards. For donations of £5 or more, supporters could get their name on the patrons’ wall, for £5,000, it was possible to sponsor and name the disabled toilet. The museum’s website suggests: “name it after yourself, someone you love or someone you hate – we will call it whatever you like – a perfect gift for your mother-in-law or ex”.
Described by Wynd as having “all the stuff that other museums don’t have,” they promise exhibitions, a coral reef aquarium, a minute gift shop, a macabre baroque cocktail bar and café and more.
As part of the permanent collection, there will be etchings by old masters, tin toys and extinct birds. Talks and lectures will be held at the museum on subjects such as aquarium husbandry, surrealism, the Mitfords, sadism, taxidermy and the occult.
In The Lion Room, available for private hire for up to ten people, guests can dine off a sarcophagus holding a nineteenth century human skeleton, surrounded by erotica and overlooked by a caged lion skeleton and a Mervyn Peake painting.
Wynd’s new book, ‘Viktor Wynd’s Cabinet of Wonders’ is now for sale.