The long awaited and often-protested against, Gunther von Hagens exhibition “Body Worlds: The Anatomical Exhibition of Real Human Bodies” finally makes its U.S. debut in Los Angeles as part of a notorious world tour that started in 1996. The exhibition is at the California Science Center.
Initially intended to teach people about the human skeletal, cardiovascular and other systems, the exhibit includes 25 bodies that have undergone a process called “plastination” in which body fluids are replaced with clear, pliable plastic. It has become an art show, rather than just a science show and somehow pushed aside the YBAs less horrific attempts to do the same with animals.
According to this article, during exhibit stops in Asia and Europe, about 6,000 people have signed papers donating their bodies to von Hagens’ institute for possible plastination.
This exhibit is now pushing figurative art even further. Just when one thinks that representational art cannot be coaxed into producing anything “new.”
And as we all know, “new” is what often seduces art critics into auto-thinking “good.”