Monday, October 24, 2005

Body Worlds

As someone with an intense dislike of those medical procedure shows, I wasn't sure what I would think about this, but my curiosity got the better of me. I checked out the Body Worlds exhibition at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia yesterday, and it is indeed as impressive as it appears to be. Through an innovative technique called plastination, anatomist Gunther von Hagens has managed to preserve all the tissue of real human bodies and display them in various poses in order to show different aspects of the body's systems: muscular, circulatory, nervous, etc. A couple of things that struck me: we are really packed full of stuff inside - there's absolutely no empty space in there. And the fact that you're looking at the insides of real people who were once alive is a little creepy (for some reason it was the teeth that solidified the fact to me that these weren't just models), but the educational aspects make it extremely worthwhile, not to mention the sheer macabe fascination of the whole display.

It's not cheap (understandable given that it takes 1500 hours of labor to prepare one body) but for any of you in the Philly or Toronto areas (where it's also on tour), I would highly recommend it.


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