Anyone taking an EF College Break trip to London this summer may return home with a newfound appreciation for dirt. Especially if you decide to spend some of your free time at a new exhibition called "Dirt: the Filthy Reality of Everyday Life".
This looks like a great exhibition. It’s at the Wellcome Collection, which I’d never heard of until today but now want to visit the next time I go to London. The motto on their website is “A Free Destination for the Incurably Curious”. I like free things, and I’m kind of incurably curious, so this sounds like a good place for me.
Anyway, the dirt exhibition sounds promising. As the name indicates, they expand the concept of “dirt” to mean basically anything people find unclean. You see everything from the historical (a 19th-century sewer worker’s iron pick) to the nausea-inducing (five blocks sculpted from human feces). There’s also a broom encrusted with diamonds, a floor pattern made from dust found in homes, and an 18th-century book of scurvy remedies that recommends cow urine. All told there are around 200 exhibits on display. That’s a lot of dirt.
I like when something makes us stop and think about things we don’t normally think about. This dirt exhibition is a great example. Its stated purpose is to make us think about humanity’s relationship to dirt. I think they've already succeeded. I’m going to wash my feet.