Sublimi Anatomie: A New Exhibition Exploring Art and Anatomy Exhibition at Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome

Philippe Comar--the man behind the amazing Figures du corps: Une leçon d'anatomie and contributor to our upcoming book on Fredrick Ruysch--has co-curated an excellent looking exhibition that exploresthe "sublime nature of the human body" via a rich collection of contemporary art and historical artifacts.

More details below, and images--by Photo Monkeys Video Lab--above. You can get more details here.


October 22, 2019 - January 6, 2020

Curated by Andrea Carlino, Philippe Comar, Anna Luppi, Vincenzo Napolano, Laura Perrone

Sublimi Anatomie is a show which reveals the sublime nature of the human body, a journey from past to present exploring the common ground between art and scientific endeavour. Our observation of the human body is a long and spectacular tale dating back centuries, involving our senses – chiefly sight and touch – but also scientific instruments and technology. The Palazzo delle Esposizioni will be presenting a selection of crucial artistic and scientific works, artifacts and documents illustrating the evolution of human anatomical study and its close relation to contemporary artistic research which has focused on the tangible nature of the human body.

Inspired by historic anatomical theatres, the central rotunda of the Palazzo delle Esposizioni will become a venue for debates on the vision and construction of the image of the human body, as well as an atelier for life drawing and a performance space. With living models instead of corpses, this space will be active for the entire duration of the exhibition – activating eyes, hands and bodies.

The mise en abîme of the anatomical theatre is intended to function both as means of underlining the centrality of ‘sensitive body’ as a notion, and as a way of inverting the roles of observer and observed within the exhibition space.

The six rooms which radiate out from the central rotunda will be devoted to telling the story of how the human body has been observed in art and science, with a selection of objects and documents of the highest historical, scientific and artistic importance. Among these will be the prized anatomical mannequins made out of papier-mâché in the Nineteenth Century by Louis Thomas Jerome Auzoux. There will also be the anatomical illustrations printed using the four basic colour scheme by Jacques-Fabien Gautier d’Agoty, as well as the wax models of Filippo Pacini.

As it progresses, the display will interweave the history of anatomical studies with contemporary artistic research, including works by artists such as Berlinde De Bruyckere, Birgit Jürgenssen, Chen Zhen, Dany Danino, Dennis Oppenheim, Diego Perrone, Ed Atkins, Gary Hill, Gastone Novelli, Giuseppe Penone, Heidi Bucher, John Isaacs, Ketty La Rocca, Luca Francesconi, Marc Quinn, Marisa Merz, Michaël Borremans, Pino Pascali, Sissi, Yvonne Rainer. 

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