Dead body exhibition in Barcelona

An exhibition of dead bodies opened today in Barcelona, allowing visitors to see the complexity of the human anatomy like never before.

You can get a close look inside the skeletal, muscular, reproductive, respiratory and circulatory systems of your body. Many of the bodies are dissected in different ways so as to see what happens under our skin when performing daily activities.

The 17 corpses that display over 200 human organs are said to be of Chinese people, and have been donated for the exhibition by a medical school. The bodies have undergone a chemical treatment called ‘plastination’ that prevents them from decomposition and gives them a fibrous aseptic texture.

They even have displays comparing healthy and unhealthy bodies/organs; for e.g. you can see a real healthy lung, and a lung destroyed by smoking.

Not surprisingly, the exhibition has raised many eyebrows because it is not clear if the bodies were donated for a commercial exhibition like this, or if consent was given to do the same; rumors even say that they are bodies of executed Chinese prisoners. For these reasons, many have been calling it a shameless commercial display of death.

I personally think it’s great. Unless you are a doctor or say a homicide detective, there is no way you can see what’s really under your own skin, so I think it’s incredible that you can now go to an exhibition to have a glimpse at your own body structure (that is not artificial). There is no better way to educate yourself about your body; isn’t this how doctors study the human anatomy anyway?

The exhibition is being held at the Maritime Museum in Barcelona, and will run until January 13, 2008.