The Mori Art Museum in Tokyo, Japan is currently hosting an exhibition that highlights the intersection of art and medicine, and the role of the human body in bringing those two intellectual worlds together. Though the collection mainly consists of historical objects, many from the distant past, the aim of the curators is to draw attention to how medical technology will impact our lives in the future.
For most human beings their own body represents both the most familiar and most unknown of worlds. From ancient times humans have sought to unravel the secret mechanisms of the body, developing in the process a wealth of medical expertise. At the same time we have seen our own bodies as vessels for the representation of ideals of beauty, and long sought to depict our bodies in paintings and drawings. Leonardo da Vinci, who went so far as to dissect human bodies in order to make more accurate depictions of them, is perhaps the single creator whose output best embodies the integration of the scientific and artistic aspects of the body.
This exhibition, with its theme of “the human body as the meeting place of science (medicine) and art,” was made possible with the cooperation of the Wellcome Trust, the world’s largest independent charity funding research into human health. Consisting of around 150 valuable medical artifacts from the Wellcome Collection and around 30 works of old Japanese and contemporary art, the exhibition presents an integrated vision of medicine and the arts, science and beauty. The show is a unique attempt to reconsider the science’s role in health and happiness and also the meaning of human life and death.
Mori Art Museum: Medicine and Art: Imagining a Future for Life and Love…
(hat tip: ScienceRoll)