On 15th August MWM and I went into Manchester to the Science and Industry Museum to see an exhibition called Body Worlds, by Gunther von Hagen, the anatomist/physician, which is an exhibition of Real Human Bodies preserved by a process called plastination which was developed by Gunther von Hagen in Germany. The process makes it possible to lend rigidity to soft body parts e.g. individual muscles, organs such as the lungs, or a single nerve. This means specimens of entire bodies can be inherently stabilized and posed in such a way that they are actually capable of standing, which was formerly restricted to skeletons.
Now you may think that this exhibition would be gruesome, or resemble a circus sideshow but I can assure you it is not, it's absolutely fascintating and incredible to say the least. It enables you to see all aspects of the human body in situ and I feel priviledged to have seen what was, before von Hagen's plastinates, restricted to the closed order of physicians. Plastinates reveal the inner structure and function of the human body from the human skeleton and its interplay with the muscles, to the functions of the inner organs of the respiratory tract and the digestive organs, to the nervous and cardiovascular systems to the beginning of life in the womb. The functions of the individual organ systems are explained in accompanying texts. Disease based organ transformations, such as degenerative joint disease, myocardial infarction, or the damage caused by many years of smoking are shown as well. Having had a knee replacement I was particularly interested in an exhibit of a knee showing degeneration due to arthritis.
Obviously taking photographs was prohibited and although I bought a catalogue showing photographs of many of the exhibits there is the question of copyright, so I am unable to scan any of the photographs to show you. You can, however, see examples here.
The Manchester exhibition finished on the 17th August but there is a permanent exhibition in Guben, Germany and also exhibitions in Edmonton, Baltimore and Los Angeles. If you are anywhere near any of these exhibitions I would encourage you to go and see for yourself (if you haven't already) - you'll be amazed.
Day three of Doodle Week and todays theme is WATER.
If you want to join in post your doodle then click here and sign Mr. Linky to let others know you're playing. Don't forget to go visit the other participants.
Here's my WATER doodle.