In November, the Museum of Failure, a traveling exhibit on retail mistakes, marketing disasters and spectacular bad ideas, begins its American tour at the Mall of America. If you never knew toothpaste brand Colgate launched frozen beef lasagna dinners in the ’80s, the Museum of Failure has the recipes: Its display includes the waxed color cardboard packaging. (It must be that sus-like ricotta that sent toothpaste lasagna to her grave.)
The Museum of Failure is originally from Sweden and has since toured internationally in Asia, Europe and the United States. Its producers were not reachable at press time, but the exhibition has already created some buzz. â80-90% of all innovation projects fail, everyone in the company knows that,â says Dr. Samuel West, museum designer, psychologist and innovation researcher, in a travel video highlighting the Museum. âWhere are these failures? Businesses sweep them under the rug and pretend they don’t exist. The Museum of Failure takes these failed products, displays them, so that everyone can learn from them. “
Artifacts in the Museum of Failure range from 17th century blunders to today’s products: Coca-Cola’s âBlakâ (a blend of Diet Coke and coffee), green ketchup, and âBiC For Herâ âpens. pinks and purples designed specifically for women. An entire showcase appears to be devoted to former President Donald Trump, with his self-proclaimed Monopoly board game. In total, the exhibition includes 159 products and services. âI would say about a third of the things I bought on Ebay, the other third that I got from some sort of specialized forum,â West explains in the same video. âTwo of those items I bought in dark alleys paying only cash. I can’t tell you which they are.
But the failures aren’t limited to niche quirks – they include products like Google Glass, Blockbuster DVDs, and Apple’s Newton Message Pad, which predated the iPhone. The intention of the museum is less to revel in failures than to demonstrate how failure is a crucial step in innovation, ultimately prompting visitors to take their own risks. It includes a âFailure Confessionalâ element where visitors can add testimonies of their own personal failures to the museum’s collection.
The Museum of Failure will be open at the Mall of America from November 12, 2021 to January 9, 2022, before continuing its tours in Chicago, Atlanta, West Palm Beach, San Antonio and Seattle.
Ticket prices start at $ 18, and more information, including details on COVID security protocols, can be found on its website.