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Rakewell

The wacky waxworks of Boston

1 September 2017

Introducing Rakewell, Apollo’s wandering eye on the art world. Look out for regular posts taking a rakish perspective on art and museum stories.

Fans of that Cristiano Ronaldo bust would be well advised to take a trip to Boston, where the Dreamland Wax Museum recently opened in City Hall Plaza. No sooner had the place opened its doors to the public than the Internet erupted in mockery, variously deriding the exhibits as ‘creepy’ and ‘horrendous’, and in one instance comparing the display to ‘a ring of hell’. In this case – for once – Rakewell concedes that the Twitterati may have a point.

Take a look at this (supposed) likeness of President Trump and ask yourself the question: would you buy a used car from this man?

Rapper Snoop Dogg fares little better…

Nobody, however, has translated quite as weirdly as the British Royal Family. Although the Queen gets off relatively lightly, Prince William comes out as a dead ringer for – of all people – former UK culture minister Ed Vaizey.

And the museum’s waxwork of Princess Diana has something of the journalist Rachel Johnson about her…

Nevertheless, the museum seems to be revelling in the ignominy. One representative has gone so far as to describe the ridicule as a ‘blessing’. ‘Even if it’s negative press, it’s working wonderfully,’ says the museum’s vice president of sales. ‘I’m proud of every single wax figure in here […] Some people love Picasso, some people don’t. It’s perception.’ Which is certainly one way of putting it…

Got a story for Rakewell? Get in touch at rakewell@apollomag.com or via @Rakewelltweets.

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