Mad museums on South Island

I have to say that some of the strangest museums I’ve been to are here in New Zealand.

They have the world’s only steampunk museum on South Island, with some very unusual displays … sort of Dr Who meets Narnia in Steptoe’s yard –

But the descriptions were the highlight for me.

This – if you hadn’t already recognised it – is a lunar dismembulator cannon …

And if you’re not sure what a lunar dismembulator cannon is, there’s a helpful description –

Likewise, some people might have thought that this was simply a room filled with pretty coloured lights –

But they would have missed the point entirely –

– a space-time travel gateway … blimey.

The World of Wearable Art Museum in Nelson offers a different kind of gateway; it’s the gateway to looking otherworldly, rather than actually travelling to other worlds.

I imagine this outfit would make daily life rather difficult, whichever world you happened to live in –

But on the other hand, I could see the appeal of this one –

– particularly on the tube in the rush hour.

And this would be an excellent way to use up a spare bit of shag-pile –

Then there was a section called ‘Bizarre Bras’, which showcased the winning entries in a bra-designing competition.  No matter how outlandish they look, they are all wearable, and have all been worn on the catwalk.

This one won first prize –

It’s called Uplift, and the turbine blades go round as the model walks.

I liked this one, called Step Right Up –

– but it would be difficult to know what to wear over it; a fitted shirt or clingy top would be a definite no-no.

And this one would be quite practical for a wet climate like  Malaysia –

– at least part of you would stay dry if you were caught in a downpour.

NZ museums are so zany that I couldn’t understand how the country gained its reputation for being a tad staid – but then I decided that all the sheep farmers must come home at night and pour all their creative energies into designing wool based creations to showcase the material they spend all day producing –

– like this one, called Cell Belle and inspired by a single cell organism.  They’re versatile people, those sheep farmers.

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