Modified on: 30/10/2023
Where they are located and which are the most interesting to visit
Cannabis is gaining more and more respectability, and thanks to its many uses, it is also becoming the subject of exciting insights. Below is a brief overview of the museums dedicated to cannabis (CBD cannabis in its legal version) in Italy, Europe and the world.
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Cannabis Museums in Europe
As far as museums dedicated to marijuana in Europe are concerned, it is essential to start with The Hash Marihuana & Hemp Museum, located in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. The Netherlands has played and continues to play a pioneering role in the liberalisation and normalisation of cannabis and hashish.
The Netherlands has been and continues to be a pioneer in the liberalisation and normalisation of cannabis.
Opened in 1985 in the Red Light District by its founder, Ben Dronkers, it was forced to close almost immediately. However, Dronkers’ determination led to its reopening after just one week.
We will be returning to The Hash Marihuana & Hemp Museum shortly with some more details.
Almost of the same name, The Hash Marihuana & Hemp Museum, the cannabis museum located in Barcelona, in the modernist building known as Palau Mornau. This is the only European museum to provide visitors with an overview of how marijuana was used in medicine and particular rituals in ancient times.
Finally, the Hemp Embassy, located in Vienna, Austria, has the primary objective to show visitors everything about the growth of the hemp plant from its birth.
The museum can still be visited free of charge.
Special mention for the museum in Amsterdam
But when talking about cannabis museums, it is unthinkable to dedicate only a few lines to Amsterdam, the world leader in legalising the versatile plant.
As mentioned above, the Amsterdam Cannabis Museum was the first museum dedicated to cannabis globally, located in De Wallen, in the famous Red Light District, founded in 1985 by entrepreneur Ben Dronkers.
The first cannabis museum in the world was in Amsterdam.
Inside the museum, you can find all kinds of information about cannabis, thanks mainly to the collection of documents on the history of its culture worldwide.
A visit to the museum will give you a detailed insight not only into recreational marijuana but also into its use in ancient medicine and industry.
That’s right. In the past, cannabis was used in various contexts, including the sacred rituals of not one but several religions. Its use is preserved in Sufism, Buddhism, Shinto, and even Christianity.
There is also evidence of marijuana use in the African tribes of the Zulus and Pygmies, to name but a few, and today several religions continue to practice ceremonial consumption. The case of the Rastafari is striking in this respect.
Hemp has also been instrumental in the evolution of textiles in the past. It was the starting point of the textile industry, providing a viable and more environmentally friendly alternative to animal skins.
Its woven fibre soon found applications beyond just covering, being used to create valuable tools for hunting and fishing, for example.
As for the practical organisation of the museum, we see it divided into two main exhibition spaces: the cannabis museum gallery and the cannabis museum.
The museum houses an extensive collection of paintings, including several works by Rembrandt. In addition, the author provides us with numerous images to visually describe the use of cannabis in everyday life in his time.
There is also an extensive collection of marijuana paraphernalia, including the pipe found in the home of none other than William Shakespeare.
Following our national history, there are no museums dedicated to cannabis as a recreational substance in Italy. However, what has distinguished us in the past has been the immense industrial value we have been able to attribute to hemp.
In fact, up until the middle of the twentieth century, we were among the world’s leading growers and exporters of hemp, second only to the endless plantations of the Soviet Union.
And this aspect of our tradition is also reflected in the many museums and eco-museums dedicated to this plant as a source of textile fibres. There are several:
- the museum of hemp and women’s work in Prazzo, Cuneo;
- the hemp museum in Pieve di Cento, Bologna;
- the museum of rural life in Romagna in Russi, Ravenna;
- the eco-museum of the culture of hemp processing in Carmagnola, Turin;
- the hemp museum in Pisoniano, Rome;
- the hemp museum in Sant’Anatolia di Narco, Perugia.
In these museums, the visitor is offered an authentic practical experience by setting up real didactic laboratories.
The aim of these activities and keeping alive the historical memory of our country is to enhance and try to keep alive, over time, an art that has almost disappeared completely.
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