What started the idea of this museum?
There was an artist couple: they broke up and joked between the two of them that they could start a museum of broken relationships. A couple years later they asked their friends and family what do they have (from past relationships), and everyone had something. They had the pop-up. It was huge immediately because everyone can relate. They started to do touring and they kept touring and more people were interested. Then they opened the original building in Zagreb in 2010, then they opened the second location here in LA. They’ve done tours all around the world. An LA lawyer visited the museum in Zagreb and he was touched, and decided to open one here in LA. He met the artist couple and they collaborated on it.
What is the most heartbreaking item you have received?
The museum is divided into sections, so when you come in you will first see the ice breaker stories. And then when you get around the corner, it starts to feel a little bit more physically insecure, where some really hard stories are about like long term marriages, some very heart-breaking stories. And as you leave, there are more stories that are very optimistic.
You are happy that they happened and they form what you are today.
How do you feel when you are learning these heartbreaking stories from different people every day?
All of those times when I thought I was the lowest because I am going through broken relationships myself... I am actually the most connected because it is such an universal situation. We all fall down when we are looking for love. At the beginning I thought I’d start to turn cold inside and these stories wouldn't get to me...but they do. They absolutely do. People are trusting me and the museum to tell their stories and to take care of things that are very precious to them. And I take that job very seriously.
Do you think the museum help people find closure?
Absolutely. I think the really beautiful thing is when I see people who are together coming in and being brought closer because it’s a safe place to talk about your relationships and the relationships you had that didn’t work. It reminds you what you are thankful for now. By the end, we get a lot of kissing going on. And it’s really nice to see that it brings people together and it’s a place for people can feel less alone. We are proof that everyone understands; maybe some of your friends or family don't want to hear it anymore, but trust me, we do, we want to hear it. We share and we have no judgement about what happened.