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'Museum' aims to heal broken hearts in Taiwan

TAIPEI--A traveling exhibition centered on failed relationships and their ruins will be held in Taipei from Saturday through Sept. 1, with an objective to heal and inspire locals who have gone through similar experiences, event curators said Friday.

The exhibition-known for its interactivity with the audience, since its entire collection is donated by the public-will feature a Taiwanese perspective, as about a third of the hundred-odd exhibits have been donated by local people, the curators said.

That way, visitors could better relate to the owners' feelings, said Olinka Vistica from Croatia.

“I felt the Taiwanese donations are more sincerely poetic,” Vistica stated when asked about her general impression of the items donated by local people.

She said that, unlike those collected in the Western society, such as tear-off love letters, which are often straightforward in expression, Taiwanese collections involve more deeply buried and obscure emotions.

One of Vistica's favorite local collections is a bottle of water, whose owner had treasured it as a memory of a 14-month-long love relationship to “feel the warmth of your tongue on this bottle.”

Often, different cultural perspectives could be presented through such items, giving the exhibition more color and nuance, said Vistica, who initiated the program in 2010 with her ex-boyfriend Drazen Grubisic while they were trying to figure what to do with things they used to own together.

Grubisic expressed hope that the exhibition could inspire people to search for deeper insights, rather than rue their unsuccessful relationships, by relating to other people's experiences.

The “museum” is now on its third visit to the Asia-Pacific region, having previously toured Singapore and the Philippines.

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