There's a bit of cognitive dissonance that comes from using the word "punk" and "museum" in the same sentence. But it's nearly fifty years since the emergence of the New York Dolls, Ramones, Sex Pistols, The Clash, and The Damned, so, well, here we are. From the Punk Rock Museum in Las Vegas to the Icelandic Punk Museum, the Riot Grrl section at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, and the Ramones Museum in Germany (above), there are numerous institutions around the globe paying tribute to a transformative moment in musical and cultural history that continues to deliver aftershocks decades later. Here are two of them from Spin's list of "10 Punk Rock Museums Around The World That Prove Punk Will Never Die":
Nirvana: Taking Punk to the Masses at the Museum of Pop Culture (Seattle, USA)
More than 30 years after "the year punk broke," it can be easy to forget the seismic shift in culture that occurred when Nirvana's Nevermind ousted Michael Jackson as the No. 1 album on Billboardin January 1992. At the Museum of Pop Culturein Seattle you'll be reminded of the wild trajectory of these alternative music icons. More than 200 items are on display including instruments, a casting call sheet for the "Smells Like Teen Spirit" music video and the striking full-sized anatomical mannequin with angel wings from the In Uterocover art. It's all very glossy and a bit like being in a particularly cool Hard Rock Café, but the fact that Nirvana is a permanent exhibition in a museum designed by Frank Gehry says so much about their importance, not just to punks, but to the whole world[…]
Ramones Museum (Berlin, Germany)
Fan and collector Flo Hayler opened the world's only museum dedicated to NYC punk pioneers Ramones in a Berlin basement, originally as a place to store his personal collection. The museum now boasts more than 1,000 Ramones items and Hayler worked with the late Arturo Vega, creator of the iconic Ramones logo and often called "the fifth Ramone," on exhibits that have attracted punks from around the world. Johnny's jeans, a signed leather jacket, never-before-seen photos from Ramones manager Danny Fields and many T-shirts, set lists and flyers are highlights.