Boise Weekly would like to extend special thanks to everyone in attendance; our judges—bookseller and freelance writer Greg Likins, author and educator Christian Winn, storyteller Jessica Holmes and The Cabin Executive Director Kurt Zwolfer—the folks at Rediscovered Books; and the Basque Market for providing snacks, beer and wine.
Meanwhile, Ming Studios was in the midst of its opening reception for the international exhibition Museum of Broken Relationships, featuring mementos from loves long lost and accompanying vignettes. Among them were a package of Russian condoms, a kitchen knife, jeans, dolls—even an angry answering machine message.
The exhibition travels internationally, but many of the artifacts came from Boise.
Over the years, Croatian exhibition curators Olinka Vistica and Drazen Grubisic have seen thousands of these keepsakes, but denied gleaning much worldly advice about love or breakups during their travels.
"I think you just learn not to take it too seriously," said Vistica.
Over time, however, they have stumbled upon that one piece of breakup wisdom with which we're all familiar.
"We get older and we realize the part of life that is behind you has more weight," Vistica added.
The theme of broken, failed and dysfunctional love is universal, but every country Vistica and Grubisic have been to treats the issue a little differently. In Asian countries, they said, the general outlook toward breakups is "more optimistic." They don't have favorite breakup artifacts, but they have thousands of stories and objects to choose from when building an exhibition. The pair said they resist the temptation to "interpret" the exhibition, but do have a sense of how they'd like audiences to feel after walking among the detritus of shattered love:
"When you leave, will you be thinking about it? To me, that's the most you can get," Grubisic said.