Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Petting Museum

touch the previously untouchable
  [vote for,

In a petting zoo, you get to touch feel and interact with real animals. The Petting Museum follows the same principle only it's not animals you get to touch, it's exact replicas of some of the most famous exhibits assembled from the world's finest collections.

For me, the opportunity to stroke the fur on Meret Oppenheim's fur lined cup and saucer and spoon would be irresistible. Simply labelled "object" it sits behind glass in Moma New York. For others it will be running their hands over Michelangelo's statue of David, especially that perfectly carved marble bum. (for these purposes the statue is placed on a slowly rotating horizontal rotisserie type display)

There are too many objects to mention, and everyone will have a favourite that was previously held securely beyond touch and out of reach until now. Kingly crowns, shoes, wigs and jewel encrusted garments can be fondled and worn.

Totally convincing exact replicas, acheived through new 3D printing and CNC techniques, will also enable many plundered objects to be returned to their original source, with no loss to places like The British Museum of objects such as the Elgin Marbles.

xenzag, Oct 05 2022

Discussion of some of the issues https://replicas.stir.ac.uk/
[pocmloc, Oct 05 2022]

Fake version https://gallezeum.org/
[pocmloc, Oct 05 2022]

Probably "do not touch" https://o-museum.or.jp/
[pocmloc, Oct 05 2022]

Do Touch The Artwork https://www.npr.org...hibit-for-the-blind
References other projects as well [pocmloc, Oct 05 2022]


       Many museums have "handling collections" of either modern replica or genuine historical objects.
pocmloc, Oct 05 2022

       There may be the odd item at the odd museum, but I'm describing a place entirely devoted to replicas. In this museums you know of, which ones have the pieces I have mentioned? I could make a long list of objects that would be generated and assembled in one place, but didn't think it was necessary, so just presented a few examples.
xenzag, Oct 05 2022

       I would look forward to the Air and Space version. This sounds fantastically expensive and very popular with children. [+]
mylodon, Oct 05 2022

       [+] This is seriously good. Where's the half-baked element?
a1, Oct 05 2022

       Cost, apart from the extreme difficulty in making perfect replicas of items like the first lunar module or last guitar played by Jimi Hendrix.
xenzag, Oct 05 2022

       I don't think your idea as described has been done, but there are plenty of partial implementations (see links). It is definitely feasible but would be very expensive, partly because touching is very destructive to the objects and so there would have to be a rolling programme of replacement as the objects wore out.   

       I think the tactile aspect of your idea is the most interesting - as I said handling collections are the nearest to this, but they tend to be a small part of most museums collections. There are also living history collections which can always be handled by visitors but they are not curated with visitor handling as the primary focus, rather for owners or users handling and use.   

       Also in the museum world there are ongoing discussions about originals, replicas and fakes which this nicely dovetails with.   

       An interesting rabbit hole to disappear down!
pocmloc, Oct 05 2022

       // perfect replicas of items like the first lunar module //   

       Apollo 11's "Eagle?" Easy - I have it in my basement. [8th] left it to me in his will. I also have John Costen-Mueller's FIRST replica of Little Boy in case you're interested. Atomic John didn't have a supply of bomb-grade uranium to refit it so he let me have it cheap.
a1, Oct 05 2022

       I love the thought behind this. We lost much of our already skinny habit of all things tactile, including shaking hands, hugging, holding hands, etc, thanks to covid. Just touching a friend's forearm, or moving hair from their forehead, you know, as she did in "The Way We Were" is rare.
blissmiss, Oct 05 2022


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