San Diego Natural History Museum--Your Nature ConnectionBody WorldsExhibits
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This exhibition closed October 4, 2009


Gunther von Hagens’ BODY WORLDS exhibitions are the original, precedent-setting public anatomical exhibitions of real human bodies, by physician, anatomist, and inventor of Plastination, Dr. Gunther von Hagens. The exhibition offers visitors an in-depth view of the intricately designed human body, comparative anatomy showing wellness and disease, and the mysterious world of the brain.

Throughout our lives, from birth to adolescence and adulthood to old age, the brain chisels, refines, learns, reinvents, matures, and transforms itself. BODY WORLDS & The Brain—Our Three Pound Gem includes a special feature on the brain inspired by the latest findings in neuroscience on brain development and function, brain disease and disorders, and brain performance and improvement. “The brain is an incredible marvel of engineering. I wanted people to recognize what is known about this amazing gem inside our heads, and be awed by its possibilities and capacities,” said von Hagens.

Specimens on display in the BODY WORLDS exhibitions stem from the Institute for Plastination’s unique body donation program, which von Hagens began in 1983. There are more than 9000 body donors on the Institute’s body donation roster, including 175 from California. Dr. Michael Hager, the Museum’s President and CEO, says, “The Beijing Olympics have recently demonstrated just how exquisite the human body can be. Now, our visitors have an opportunity to see the most remarkable creature on Earth, revealed in its elegant design.”

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Watch a sneak preview of BODY WORLDS .

The exhibition at the San Diego Natural History Museum will be accompanied with programming created by panel of experts in the local medical community. The curatorial panel is: Dr. Hank Chambers, Medical Director, Cerebral Palsy Program, Rady Children’s Hospital; Sandra Garver, Lecturer in Biology, SDSU; Dr. William Quillin, retired physician specializing in obstetrics/gynecology; and Dr. Anne McCammon, neurologist.

What Visitors Are Saying

  1. Awesome, very educational, wonderful for my students.
    Warner Springs, CA
  2. WOW! What an amazing insight into our bodies and how they function. Thank you.
    Newbury Park, CA
  3. It was an awesome experience for me and my family. Thank you for creating this!
    San Marcos, CA
  4. It’s the second time I’ve been through this exhibit. As a nursing student, it is extremely helpful in understanding the body.
    Palm Desert, CA
  5. The intricate displays were extraordinary. More people should visit so they can learn how habits/conditions can severely affect many parts of your body.
    San Diego, CA
  6. By far the best exhibit I have seen.
    San Diego, CA
  7. This exhibit has inspired me to pursue a degree in medicine and one day it would be an honor to be a part of this exhibit.
    San Diego, CA
  8. Amazing!! Awesome! Extraordinary work!! Artistically inspired - scientific view – priceless.
    Chula Vista, CA
  9. Excellent! I’ll quit smoking after this.
    Mexicali, Mexico
  10. This exhibit shows, in depth, the body and how it works. Never in my life could I have imagined understanding the human body. This exhibit should be part of every schools curriculum. Thank you.
    San Diego, CA
  11. Truly amazing. Extremely educational.
    Chula Vista, CA
  12. Loved it! Opened my eyes to some things we have taken for granted, makes me what to take care of my health.
    Highland, CA
  13. Truly the most awesome presentation of the human body imaginable!
    Oceanside, CA
  14. I loved the exciting exhibit! Very cool! It inspires me NEVER to smoke!!!
    Rocklin, CA
  15. Amazing, informative and beautifully displayed.
    Ft. Worth, TX
  16. Awesome! Took me way past the college classroom. Learn a lot! Thanks
    Hillsboro, OH
  17. Today, I will begin taking better care of my body since now I’ve seen what happens when I don’t ! Thanks for the insight.
    San Diego, CA
  18. I came away with a better understanding of the human body, disease and development. I am considering becoming a donor myself.
    Riverside, CA
  19. I was not sure what to expect upon arrival. “Wow? what an amazing, interesting and educational experience! A must see!
    Tucson, AZ
  20. Speechless.
    Shelbyville, IN

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