Have you ever stumbled upon a frozen pool of puke in the middle of the sidewalk late some frozen winter night and mistaken it for art? And, in that moment, mind muddled by substance, heart full of the stars and bustle, did you wonder to yourself, "What are the most disgusting monuments from around the world"? As it turns out, such conjecture isn't solely the provenance of drunken romantics who mistake frozen vomit for public art. Indeed, the nastiest monuments in the world contain chewed-up gum, hanged dolls, and disfigured human body parts suspended in formaldehyde.
These gross monuments come in various shapes and sizes - some are private undertakings that captured the public imagination, others museums created for public edification. One's just a wall on the street. Yet all these putrescent attractions have one thing in common - they nasty. If you're nasty too, or have a morbid curiosity for all things vile, you've come to the right place. Check out some of the most disgusting landmarks from around the world.
Seattle's Pike Place Market is known for its fish throwers and for being home of the first Starbucks. And, since 1993, it's also been known for the Gum Wall, which started outside The Market Theater, when people waiting in line for a show would stick gum to the wall. The practice caught on, and the entire wall was soon full of ABC gum. People began sticking pennies into the gum, making shapes and writing words on the wall.
At first, the gum was deemed unsanitary and was scraped off the wall. Then it came in such volume, employees of the theater gave up. In 1999, city officials recognized the wall was a tourist attraction. In 2015, it was completely cleared of gum, to prevent the bricks from eroding, but gum began appearing again almost immediately thereafter. The first gum to show up on the wall after the cleaning was in tribute to the victims of the Paris shooting in fall 2015.
According to its website, Philadelphia's Mütter Museum is "America’s finest museum of medical history." Founded in 1858, it includes a human skull collection, President Grover Cleveland's jaw tumor, Einstein's brain, a wax model of a syphilitic face (pictured), a massive 40 pound human colon, and more. It also has the Soap Lady, who gets her name because, after her death, all of her body's fat underwent saponification. Which means her fat literally turned into soap.
And after visiting this museum, you may want to clean yourself with as much soap as possible. On your way out, maybe get a megacolon plushy in the gift shop though.
Do you get creeped out by caves? What about a cave full of human hair? That's what you'll get if you go to the Avanos Hair Museum in Turkey. It started when Turkish potter Chez Galip said goodbye to a friend and asked for something to remember her by. She cut off a lock of her hair.
Later, whenever other female visitors or tourists came through town, he'd tell the story, and she'd be so moved (or so not willing to be outdone) she'd cut off a chunk of hair. Now, about 16,000 hair samples line the walls of the museum.
In 1950, Don Julian Santana Barrera was living on a small island in Xochimilco, a network of canals south of Mexico City. Legend has it he found a girl who drowned in mysterious circumstances, and, not long thereafter, found a floating doll in canal. Barrera believed the doll belonged to the girl, and hung it in a tree as a sign of respect. After doing this, he thought he heard the girls' screams, and believed she was haunting the island.
To appease her spirit, he collected more and more dolls, and hung them in the trees. He continued this practice until his death in 2001. These days, tourists visit the area and hang up dolls of their own. Some say they can even here the dolls whispering to each other at night.