The Museum.

Mmuseumm: Smallest Museum in NYC

Field review by the editors.

New York, New York

"Mmuseumm" is the petite pet project of a trio of friends who run a film company out of an office upstairs from this alley attraction. In 2012 Alex Kalman, along with brothers Josh and Benny Safdie, learned that their landlord was turning their building's elevator shaft into art studios. They jumped at the chance to rent a tiny ground-floor space that opens directly onto the street. Then they assembled a compact, neatly organized display of "modern day artifacts."

When we visited, the collection included mutilated money, Disney-themed bullet-proof backpacks, fake vomit from around the world, detailed sculptures of personal parts used to train people in the piercing profession, and ephemera retrieved from the storage unit of Screw magazine publisher Al Goldstein.

Plastic vomit.
Plastic vomit.

Also on display was the newsworthy shoe that was thrown at George W. Bush at the Prime Minister's Palace in Baghdad (donor information confidential). The array of oddities displayed at Museum changes every year and, as you probably realize, not all of it is family-friendly.

The space features video programming (on one small screen, of course), a wall-mounted gift shop, and a minuscule espresso cafe.

A catalog is available for purchase, but you may prefer the audio guide, which is fun and free; simply dial the toll-free number posted on the wall, enter the number of the object you are viewing, and a calm, authoritative voice will describe its history and appearance.

Kosher toothpaste.
Kosher toothpaste.

If you want to go inside, visit on weekends between 11 and 7; but you can view the museum at any time -- even the dead of night -- by peering through the metal door's slot-like windows. The backlit beauty of these curiosities beckons 24/7, mesmerizing seasoned travelers as well as puzzled local pedestrians who just happen upon this itty-bitty accumulation of the unusual.

[ADB]


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Mmuseumm: Smallest Museum in NYC

Address:
4 Cortlandt Alley, New York, NY
Directions:
Downtown. On the west side of Cortlandt Alley, just north of Franklin St. Cortlandt Alley is midway between Broadway and Lafayette St. By subway: Take the N or R to Canal Street. At intersection of Canal and Broadway walk south three blocks on Broadway to White Street. Make a left on White Street. Cortlandt Alley cuts into the middle of the block on your right. Walk down the alley. Museum is near the end of the block on the right side.
Hours:
Th-F 6-9 pm, Sa-Su noon-6. Exhibits can be viewed 24/7 through the windows. Phone tour also 24/7. (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Phone:
888-763-8839
Admission:
Donation $5.
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
Save to My Sights

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In the region:
Last House of Edgar Allan Poe, Bronx, NY - 12 mi.

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August 15, 2020

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