We saw an amazing, very educational and awe-inspiring exhibition yesterday - not really an art show**, but a science and health one based on the human body, Body Worlds.
I thought I'd feel a bit squeamish seeing real human bodies with skin, fat and liquids removed and then preserved by plastination. But no, it was amazing to see muscles, ligaments, tendons, organs, and the beautiful filigrees of blood vessels and nerves in bodies posed in various sport activities. There were displays of individual organs, some ravaged by disease. Smokers would be appalled by the black lungs! We were left with a new found appreciation and awe for the complex and usually well-run machine that is our body. I enjoyed the historical references to early anatomical studies and drawings by artists like Leondardo da Vinci, making me recall an excellent exhibition of anatomy drawings at the Vancouver Art Gallery a few years ago.
Body Worlds has been and is still traveling around the world, so maybe it will be somewhere near you. I'd first read about it when it opened in Tokyo about two? years ago and was thrilled to see it here in Vancouver at Science World. Only a few days left here, so if you haven't seen it yet, go!
Both the Science World page and the Body Worlds official site are very informative about the plastination process, the donor program and additional educational resources like this student guide, a four minute video, and the amazing biography of the inventor of plastination Gunther von Hagens.
(**I'm going to place this in the art exhibition category anyway, as our bodies are the ultimate work of art as presented here!)