The ICELANDIC PHALLOLOGICAL MUSEUM opened in Iceland; Located in Reykjavik, Iceland, the Phallological Museum houses the world’s largest display of penises and penile parts. The collection of 280 specimens from 93 species of animals includes 55 penises taken from whales, 36 from seals and 118 from land mammals, allegedly including Huldufolk (Icelandic elves) and trolls. In July 2011, the museum obtained its first human penis, one of four promised by would-be donors. Its detachment from the donor’s body did not go according to plan and it was reduced to a greyish-brown shrivelled mass pickled in a jar of formalin. The museum continues to search for “a younger and a bigger and better one.”
Founded in 1997 by retired teacher Sigurour Hjartarson and now run by his son Hjörtur Gísli Sigurosson, the museum grew out of an interest in penises that began during Sigurður’s childhood when he was given a cattle whip made from a bull’s penis. He obtained the organs of Icelandic animals from sources around the country, with acquisitions ranging from the 170 cm (67”) front tip of a blue whale’s penis to the 2 mm (0.08”) penis bone of a hamster, which can only be seen with a magnifying glass. The museum claims that its collection includes the penises of elves and trolls, though, as Icelandic folklore portrays such creatures as being invisible, they cannot be seen. The collection also features phallic art and crafts such as lampshades made from the scrotums of bulls.
The museum has become a popular tourist attraction with thousands of visitors a year — 60% of them women — and has received international media attention, including a Canadian documentary film called The Final Member, which covers the museum’s quest to obtain a human penis. According to its mission statement, the museum aims to enable “individuals to undertake serious study into the field of phallology in an organized, scientific fashion.” The museum’s guest book includes comments such as, “I’ve never seen so many penises–and I went to boarding school!” (from a New Zealand visitor), “They’re bigger in the USA,” (from someone from Wisconsin) and “Is there a vagina museum?”(On this point, Sigurður has said, “I’m only collecting the male organ. Somebody else has to do the other job. I’d be interested in how they would preserve it. I think vaginas are better alive.”)