September 1, 2009 §
The Wellcome Collection in London is hosting an exhibition of 19th-century anatomical wax models, entitled “Exquisite Bodies” from July 30th to October 18th (photo credit). In Victorian Britain, the demand for cadavers for dissection was very high, but the supply was low. One solution was to make anatomical wax models to teach anatomy. A lot of these models also found their way into museums, teaching the public about reproduction and contagious diseases.
There’s a lot to explore on the exhibition’s website: image galleries with some of the most prominent items, an interactive anatomical Venus and videos on these Victorian wax wenches.
Also check out the Guardian’s image gallery and an audio slideshow from BBC News.