Share This Article
A giant tampon soaked in glittery ‘blood’, 28 pictures of vulvas, and vagina notebooks. These are three of the items you can expect to see at the Vagina Museum that will open its doors on 19 March 2022.
The exhibit, which was temporarily housed as a pop-up in Camden Market, has now found permanent residence on Sugarloaf Walk in Bethnal Green, east London.
Florence Schechter, the director and founder, told PRUDE that the museum came to fruition after she discovered there was a penis museum in Iceland but no vagina museum anywhere in the world.
Florence said: “I put on Twitter, ‘lol guys there’s a penis museum but no vagina museum shall we make one?’ And then I quote tweeted myself saying: ‘guys I tweeted this on a whim but I think it’s a life goal now.’ And I decided there and then I was going to do it.”
The Museum includes two exhibitions, the first of which is a temporary exhibit called Periods: A Brief History which will run for six months. The exhibit discusses the myths and taboos surrounding periods from prehistory (time period before written records) up to modern day.
They include information boards with different stories and beliefs. One example includes Roman philosopher, Pliny the Elder’s book, Natural History, which says that a woman on her period could stop a hailstorm if she were to lift up her skirt.
The second exhibit, From A to V is a new edition to the museum and will be permanent. It is largely based on what members of the public have requested to see.
This exhibit includes underwear bleached by three vaginas, one of which belongs to Florence. She wanted people to realise that bleached underwear is a normal part of having a vagina, caused by high PH levels.
Florence said: “We based all this off the past two years of audience feedback. We saw the themes that were important to people, and asked what they wanted to see in [the museum].”
The display also has a speculum, which is used by doctors to open up the cervix during a cervical screening. The display is for cervix-owners who haven’t had a cervical screening before and want to know what a speculum looks like.
Perhaps the most impressive part of the exhibit was ‘the vulva wall’, which includes 28 pictures of different vulvas, each one unique. Florence welcomes viewers to request if they want to see different vulvas for example, with certain piercings or types of public hair and she promises to include them all in the exhibit.
Florence also said their community gallery will be a co-curated exhibit discussing issues such as vaginal cancer. They are in the process of applying for funding for this.
The museum has a shop with everything ranging from notepads decorated with vaginas to tote bags and t-shirts with every synonym possible for the word ‘vagina’.
The Vagina Museum will be free to enter, but they welcome donations.
Enjoyed this article? Read more here: Sustainable periods: easy changes to make your (re)cycle more eco-friendly