Body Worlds Exhibition- The Cycle of Life

BODY WORLDS is the original anatomical exhibition series displaying authentic human bodies, willed by donors through the Institute for Plastination’s Body Donor Program, and preserved using a process called plastination. Invented by Dr. von Hagens, plastination is a groundbreaking process in which real human specimens are preserved through the science of plastination. The specimens resulting from the revolutionary process are called plastinates. Plastinates show the inner workings of the body and the striking whole-body specimens show the human body in real-life poses, like never seen before. ”

Dr Gunther von Hagens
Dr GuntherVon Hagens

Walking into the exhibition at the V&A Waterfront, Cape Town, I was unsure as to what I was about to discover, if I had known, I probably would have gone 5 consecutive days in a row, but as this was our last day there, I would just accept the one viewing and do my utmost best to absorb every bit of information provided.

The start of the exhibit began with the fetal development from the size of a tiny seed and through glass jars one could see the growth of the human being from conception… mind blowing as when I stopped and looked around me, all I could see was human beings that were once that size.

I love the way in which the exhibit evolved from the conception to the bones, ligaments, tendons,muscles, bodies and in each of these sections they described and showed sicknesses, diseases or problems that could arise in the area. For example: One section of a perfectly sliced bone beautiful and strong, and the other cross section, a bone with osteoporosis, brittle, failing and disintegrating.

Dr Gunther von Hagens
Dr Gunther von Hagens

I was honestly like a kid with a new toy, the best toy I could find. Finally I had true insight into the human body, I wanted all my clients to be there with me so I could show them what I had been referring to.

The human body is a vessel and it’s magic is what intrigues me, it learns, it improves and still it functions without thought. A true marvel, I will go as far as to say that if you are not interested in your own body, you are ignorant and pathetic.

During this stage in my life, my husband and I are being extremely healthy, we exercise, we sleep 7-8 hours a night, we eat healthy and we have cut out our nightly chocolates and sweets which has been really tough. Sometimes we get a little despondent but after this viewing this incredible exhibition, we knew what we were doing was the only way forward.

There was a room full of pictures, no bodies, no plastination just pictures and quotes, which touched us, old people, still exercising ( an old man jumping into a pool for his daily swim), still eating (old lady cooking herself a healthy meal) and still happy (someone old man sleeping). The point of the entire exhibition was actually to highlight the importance of just this- Eat healthy, sleep 7-8hours and exercise! The 3 secrets to life to living the cycle of your life in the best possibly way.

The most fascinating viewing, true art for me, was that of the blood vessels, master works, one of a  hare made entirely of blood vessels, the blood vessels hold the shape to the animal so there before you is a rabbit. shaped, perfectly from beginning to end… the human hand was just breath taking. I remember looking down at my hand and marvelling, so many blood vessels, moving my blood around, keeping my hand mobile, active, energized… alive!

Dr Gunther von Hagens - hare
Blood vessels of a hare

The incredible Dr. von Hagens has done such a brilliant job, sharing his works with us. I’m truly grateful for all the he and his team has done to give us an exhibition like this.
I highly recommend that wherever you are in the world, if you stumble across one of his exhibitions, don’t even hesitate, go and discover and enjoy the beauty of the human body.