Hard bodies

Today marks the opening of one of the most interesting, and yes, controversial, forms of entertainment to hit Winnipeg in a while. Bodies…The Exhibition opens today in the newly-painted A&B Sound building (doesn’t it look so much nicer now?), and having attended the opening reception last night, I can say it’s definitely not for the faint of heart.

I’m not even going to pretend that I wasn’t totally freaked out by this exhibit. I’ve never been an watch-operations-on-TV kind of gal and quite frankly, I’d be perfectly happy to never see another horror movie in my entire life. But when something this fascinating comes to my downtown, I must at least give it a whirl.

If you don’t know anything about it, 200 bodies and body parts encased in a kind of silicone to preserve them are on display in various forms of activity and interaction. Here you can learn about the wonders and mystery of the human body, the way it moves, and the way it works. Whether or not you believe in some higher power, it’s hard not to be awed by the complexity and depth of nature on display.

There are four areas of discovery–the circulatory system, the nervous system, the muscular and skeletal system, and body anatomy. And while you can’t touch them for the most part, there is an area where you are welcome to get up close and personal with body parts like a human brain and heart. (They mostly felt waxy due to the preservation method.)

Of course, this exhibit has not been without its naysayers–some postulate this exhibit degrades the human body allowing people to profit off what some believe are the discarded remains of executed Chinese prisoners. While the exhibitors neither deny or support this claim outright–they do admit the bodies come from China–the truth is, the bodies are displayed with such reverence, I’d say that cries of degradation are largely unfounded.

While some may be put off by the mystery of the origins of these bodies, thousands around the world have taken in this exhibit that has been touring the planet for more than a decade. Tickets are sold during timed intervals to keep the crowds to a minimum and can be purchased online at Ticketmaster. The exhibit runs until January.

4 thoughts on “Hard bodies

  1. Thanks for this, I was really curious about it – not sure I could handle it. I really want to see it, just makes me nervous. I thought the bodies were all donated….just saw on CTV that ALL of the bodies come from China…. could still be donated either way. I hadn’t realized there was stuff you could touch too – what minimum age would you recommend for this?

  2. I’m not sure what minimum age would be OK–I think it would largely depend on the child what they could handle.

    And I *think* I heard it mentioned the tours can be tailored for a younger audience. If you give them a call, they should be able to give you more details.

  3. I have mentioned to many friends already and they have expressed interest to check it out. I want to learn more about my body get healthier and stay healthy and not die young free of disease. If this exhibition helps one learn more about there body I am all for everyone to see it. I watch Drt Oz and will ask him if he ahs een this exhibit bet he has as many times he has organs displayed on his show and virtual animations of the body.

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