Digital Museums: The 15 Best Collections On Tumblr

By Christian J Petersen

A Tumblr page usually takes the form of a constantly building stream of imagery that reflects the interests and personality of each particular user. All aspects of art, culture, life and humanity are represented somewhere on Tumblr. Some Tumblr users have chosen to focus more directly on a particular interest and have created pages that operate as digital museums or galleries. I have selected 15 of my favorite curated collections for your entertainment, education and inspiration.

1. Swinglargo:  A magical and enigmatic collection of vintage photography and gifs made from old films.


2. Exploding Rocks: Jaw-dropping and incredibly ornate antique Japanese costumes and other ephemera.


3. The Crypt Of Wrestling: A dizzying galaxy of horror and sci-fi memorabilia and other brain frying pop culture ephemera.

Crime Mysteries #10 (1953)

4. 73s & 88s: CB radio amateurs traded these cards with each other. Mostly hand drawn and often risqué, they offer a unique glimpse into a lost world.


5. Tomorrow And Beyond: Take a trip other worlds with this collection of classic sci-fi and fantasy art and illustration.


6. Public Collectors: In their own words, “Public Collectors is founded upon the concern that there are many types of cultural artifacts that public libraries, museums and other institutions and archives either do not collect or do not make freely accessible.”


50 Watts: One of the best known of the curated Tumblrs, consistently posting diverse and fascinating images.

Polish poster for Critters,Mieczyslaw Wasilewski,1987

8. Illusion City: A surreal collection of 8-bit art and other ’80s strangeness.


9. Babylon Falling: An explosive mix of printed ephemera from the worlds of psychedelia, hip-hop and radical politics.

Judy Gumbo Albert on the cover of Berkeley Tribe(1970)

10. Eye Burfi: Beautiful South Asian/Indian art, illustration, design and typography from traditional to contemporary

ia, Mughal style

11. Infinity Imagined: A mind-blowing exploration of our world from the microscopic to the cosmic.


12. The Overlook Hotel: Dedicated to exhaustively collecting ephemera of all kinds relating to Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining.

Warner Brothers publicity still slide from The Shining.

13. The Morthouse: A beguiling exploration of death and its visual portrayal throughout history.

Lydia Dwight Dead; made by John Dwight’s Fulham Pottery; England; 1674

14. Taped Up: A celebration of the faded glory of the cassette tape.


15. Hexagon Room: Vintage modernism and retro futurism explored through images, design, music and video.