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Posted on 15 September 2016

Agi Haines invites to "The Anatomy Lesson"

During the weekend of 24-25 September you are welcome to visit the interactive exhibition "The anatomy lesson: dissecting medical futures" in the historical Theatre Anatomicum at the Waag Society in Amsterdam. In this exhibition the anatomy lesson of the future will be explored with the sculptures by artist and CogNovo researcher Agi Haines. A special artist talk will take place on Saturday evening to discuss medical futures. Including speakers Laurens De Rooy, Patricia Pisters, Thought Collider, Marleen Stikker and from Plymouth University the head of Transtechnology research and editor in chief of Leonardo reviews Michael Punt.

Human Anatomy – the Theatre Anatomicum

At the summit of the historic Waag building is a room with momentous historical significance for innovative and novel research into human anatomy – the Theatre Anatomicum. As a place designed for cutting up cadavers, the theatre grew into an iconic site where some of the most notorious and emblematic representations of biomedical sciences were conceived, such as Rembrandt's "The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp." Dissection became paramount in our representation and understanding of the human body, but how might it play a role the future of medical representation?

Exhibition on the futuristic anatomy lesson

To find out, we welcome you to join us for a quasi-simulation of future medicine. During the event, audience members will participate in a futuristic anatomy lesson as they interact with sculptures by artist Agi Haines. Haines' work focuses on the implications of technology and their impact on the human form. Through the production of realistic sculptures, her works elaborate on the needs and desires behind human enhancement, modification, and alteration by looking at how the scientific research endorsing these possibilities are disseminated.

This interactive exhibition will be a visceral voyage into the moist and slimy (yet surprisingly speculative) side of simulation. Each sculpture in the exhibit highlights a different area of biotechnology (from transparent skin to nano-bot accumulation) that may change how we interact with the human body. The audience will dissect and probe the sculptures to determine the positive and negative effects of technological innovation.

Speculating on medical futures?

On Saturday evening, in a special panel discussion, we will debate the worth of speculating medical futures. Could the tactility of dissection aid discussion and criticism regarding these medical futures? And can the simulation of future disorders perhaps even pre-empt issues within healthcare?