Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Body Worlds (& Doodle Week Day 3).......

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.


ciara said...

mini-me went to a discovery museum last yr as a school field trip. they had a body there that was done w the plastination process. i think she was fascinated, but at the same time a little grossed out about it. i do believe she said something about almost throwing up lol it is very cool in a way...i think it's a far more reliable way of learning anatomy than the plastic models.

cheshire wife said...

The human body is amazing and fascinating, but as I get older I am beginning to think that the less I know the better.

Mother of Invention said...

We had that come to Toronto and my husband took his whole anatomy class there (people who are training to become massage therapists)and he said it was fabulous.

(Glad o see the beutiful pictures of your trip! Guess summer is over went to 3C last night!)

Queenie said...

You know what I think about this!!!!!
Like your doddle though....

Jo Beaufoix said...

Wow, that sounds amazing. I'd hurt of it and thought it sounded too grim, but I watched the youtube clip and it does look amazing. I don't think I'd take my girls yet though. Cute doodles.

Deb said...

When visiting my daughter in California last year we went to the Body World exhibit and I found it to be incredible. I actually became rather emotional a few times - it can be overwhelming when you stop and think that these were real people - people with families, friends...and you wonder about their lifes. Extremely educational...very powerful.

Akelamalu said...

There were quite a few children with their parents at the exhibition Ciara and they were all fascinated!

I know what you mean Cheshire Wife!

Shame you didn't get to see it MOI. Summer? What's summer?????

You're a wimp Queenie((wink)) Glad you like the doodle.

It was truly amazing Jo and I have to say the kids that were there took it all in their stride, you know kids like gruesome stuff.

Yes it can be a bit emotional if you think on it too much Deb, I was relieved that no personal details were given on the bodies.

Laura said...

I remember hearing about that exhibit when it came to Toronto. Didn't go to see it. Interesting no doubt but kind of creepy too.

Good water doodle. Its not easy to show water and air cause they don't show up as well as fire and earth.

James Goodman said...

That is a truly fascinating exhibit. If I have an opportunity to check it out here, I assure you I shan't miss it. :D

Akelamalu said...

Not everybody's cup of tea I agree Laura but fascinating. Glad you liked the doodle.

It would be just up your street James, it's awesome!

Empress Bee (of the High Sea) said...

i am so far behind! i just did sunflowers! yikes!

love your water!

smiles, bee

Anonymous said...

i love the simplicity of your doodles..

Athena said...

That came to my city, too. I didnt go see it, but everyone else I knew did and regaled me with tales of cigarette tar and coffee cups or something. Ick.

Love the minimalism of your doodles!

CG said...

I'd love to have seen this. it looks amazing.

storyteller said...

A friend of mine was talking about this exhibit over the weekend. Thanks for the link to photo examples. I love you ‘doodles’ always ;--)
Hugs and blessings,

Sandi McBride said...

We went to the Body Show when it was at Discovery Place in Charlotte...well, me and Good Sister did...Mac said we were nuts...Good Sister is a Registered Nurse and went for her work...I went for

Akelamalu said...

You'd better get cracking with your doodles Bee! ;)

Thankyou suedoodles :)

The exhibition not your cup of tea then I take it athena? Glad you like the doodles. :)

Not sure if it will be back CG, shame you missed it.

You should go to the exhibition if it's near you Storyteller, it's fantastic.

I presume the WOW means you were amazed like me Sandi?

Erika said...

cuter doodle! love the little umbrella ella ella ay

Ron said...

OMG, Akelamalu...this looks like so much FUN!!!

I need to check this out.

LOVE your doodles!!

Especially the's so cool!

Ron said...

WOW, Akelamalu....I can't believe you posted this, because this SAME show is a permanent exhibit in one of our museums here in Philadelphia.

And I've heard so many people say the same as was AMAZING!

On your wonderful recommendation here, I NEED to check it out.

Thanks for the share, dear lady!

Ron said...

And P.S....the first comment I left you here, was meant to go on the post below, but somehow I clicked THIS post!!?!?


Anonymous said...

Ooh, I'd love this exhibit. My boys would, too.

Samantha and Mr. Tigger said...

Wow! Sounds like a fantastic exhibit! We like your Doodles!
Your FL furiends,

Linda said...

I believe I've heard of an exhibit here in the United States that is very similar to this. I honestly have no interest in seeing it but I'm sure that others find it quite fascinating as well as enlightening. Still, though, I can't help but think those were real living and breathing people at one point in time and this just doesn't seem like a very dignified way to spend eternity. Then again - they're dead and obviously gave permission for this so what do they care? Still ... just not my cup of tea but I admire you for going and for explaining it so well here.

As for your doodle - bravo!

Akelamalu said...

Aw thanks Erika :)

You have to go see this exhibition Ron really! Glad you liked the doodles hon, I hope you join in too. xx

Then I hope you get to see it Citizen :)

It sure is and thanks Samantha and Mr. Tigger :)

Not everyone's cup of tea for sure Linda but we found it fascinating. I'm pleased you like my doodles. x

Skittles said...

Look how creative and talented you are. :)

Akelamalu said...

You think so Skittles ? :)

Anonymous said...