What’s the difference between a museum and a thrift store?
One obvious difference is that the museum usually isn’t selling the art. Thrift stores are selling just about everything in the store. Another difference might be the smell. Some thrift stores have a particular “old clothes” aroma, whereas museums might be slightly musty.
But mainly, the difference is in presentation.
At a museum, everything is presented in a way that conveys their importance. Even small paintings get large sections of the wall, so that your eye is uniquely focused on them. Especially rare items are sometimes contained in fancy glass cases with security alarms and climate control. Somebody has taken a lot of time to sort things, organize similar pieces of art together, and present them as well as they possibly can.
Everything about a museum screams “these objects are valuable”.
At a thrift store, it’s the opposite. Clothes are crammed onto racks. Sometimes the sizes aren’t even sorted that well, leaving you to pick through a whole rack to find the couple of shirts that actually fit you. Frequently housewares and dishes are piled on top of one another on the shelf. Any paintings for sale are likely sandwiched together under a taller rack – not displayed on the wall.
Everything about a thrift store screams “these objects aren’t valuable”.
That’s not to say that everything in a museum is inherently valuable, or that everything in a thrift store inherently isn’t – but that’s how they’re presented to visitors.
What does the layout of your space – and the positioning of your possessions in that space – say about what you value?