You know that shoebox under your bed that's filled with stuff that has no monetary value, but you can't part with it because of what it means to you or what it once meant to you? There may be a place online where your stuff can be appreciated: the digital collection of the Museum of Important Shit.
Curated by musician, author, and actor Nick Cave, the virtual museum exists as a place where "humble signifiers of huge significance" can be cataloged along with the stories told by those who own them. Cave came up with the idea for the museum while making the film 20,000 Days on Earth with directors Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard. He told them a story about Nina Simone sticking her gum to a piano before a performance and transforming from being a "nightmare backstage" to being the great presence that most people remember. One of his Bad Seeds bandmates kept the gum and her sweaty towel. "It’s shit," says Cave in the film, "but it’s important shit. And that’s what this project is all about."
Users are invited to login to the site and submit their important shit to the collection. Pollard, Forsyth, and Cave will curate into themed online exhibitions. So far there are postcards that spell out a marriage proposal, a Kylie Minogue bag that Cave got while high and on tour in 1992, a soap wrapper taken from the Gramercy Hotel in 1997, an accidental photograph of someone's finger, a piece of an umbilical cord, and other oddities that fall into a series of categories from "Childhood Memories" to "Fire of My Loins."
Going back to the gum story and explaining the project further, Polland and Forsyth write, "We might not all have the masticated detritus of a jazz legend tucked away, but we all accumulate objects that have little financial value, but they hold the stories of the things that make us who we are. The Museum will unlock these transformative moments that define our very being."