The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities, Fine Art & Natural History, is perhaps better known as the home of the Last Tuesday Society. I was keen to see the collection as several friends had mentioned it, knowing my own penchant for collecting ephemera, and I’d had a quick look at the book Viktor Wynd's Cabinet of Wonders and was intrigued. I suppose I was both delighted and a little disappointed by the experience. You enter through a small dark cocktail bar, pay £5 and get a free little book on the museum. You then make your way down into the basement via a steep, narrow, cast iron, spiral staircase. Here you find yourself within a small, dense maze of rooms, encrusted with densely packed cabinets and heterogeneously arranged artefacts, not a surface or wall left empty.
I loved hat it was not too carefully arrange, not too knowing or full of itself. It comes across as a genuine collection, built over time with a unique combination of discrimination and diversity. There was much I admired and envied, and it gave me heart that my own, rather limited compendium, had potential. I appreciate its anti contemporary museum ethos, as described in the introduction of the little free book, and work involved in maintaining ‘constantly evolving and revolving displays. Then why the disappointment? I suppose it is the obviousness of some aspects of the collection and its display. It seems is trying too hard to be a Gothic horror cabinet of curiosities, and, my skin itches a little at the thought of fresh animal and bird skulls recently bought on the Internet and fashioned into contemporary curiosities.