Myth of the Human Body: A Review


This is an interesting traveling exhibition from Korea that you should not miss. It may be a bit disturbing but it’s justified as an education in anatomy with a slant of “you should stop smoking and start living healthy”. This is an exhibit of cadavers preserved with a technique called plastination (developed by Gunther von Hagens, a German anatomist).

I like the educational value and eerie feel of the exhibit, but my gut tells me that whoever developed this is a bit mad. If you believe that our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, then it is not right to manipulate and use it in this manner. (Even if you say that most of the cadavers are ex-cons from China).

Overall, I would recommend seeing it because it is very effective in giving you a sense of urgency to live healthy. Here’s my review of the exhibit…

Photo by Richard Romano

DSLRs are not allowed inside the exhibit. As much as I like taking photos, I understand why they enforced this rule. After all, it could create a controversy, depending on how you take the photos. The best photos of the exhibit I’ve seen are from Richard Romano in the Digital Photographer forums.

Photo by Richard Romano

The bodies are artistically positioned to resemble sports players — just without the skin and with accents on the muscles (with genitals intact). You’ll see a basketball player, a soccer player, an archer, and a runner.

This exhibit’s body positions are less controversial than other positions created by Gunther von Hagens.

The Plastination Process (source: Wikipedia)

“There are four steps in the standard process of plastination: fixation, dehydration, forced impregnation in a vacuum, and hardening. Water and lipid tissues are replaced by curable polymers. Curable polymers used by plastination include silicone, epoxy and polyester-copolymer.

The first step of plastination is fixation. This simply means that the body is embalmed, usually in a formaldehyde solution, in order to halt decomposition.

After any necessary dissections take place, the specimen is then placed in a bath of acetone. Under freezing conditions, the acetone draws out all the water and replaces it inside the cells.

In the third step, the specimen is then placed in a bath of liquid polymer, such as silicone rubber, polyester or epoxy resin. By creating a vacuum, the acetone is made to boil at a low temperature. As the acetone vaporizes and leaves the cells, it draws the liquid polymer in behind it, leaving a cell filled with liquid plastic.

The plastic must then be cured with gas, heat, or ultraviolet light, in order to harden it.

A specimen can be anything from a full human body to a small piece of an animal organ, and they are known as ‘plastinates’. Once plastinated, specimens and bodies can be manipulated and positioned.”

Photo by Richard Romano

The eyes are not plastinated, that’s why they are creepy, except for one cadaver where you can still see the preserved eyes.

Photo by Richard Romano

This one is both artistic and slightly gross. This exhibit showcases how our food travels when we eat — from the mouth, to the stomach, and all the way through the intestines. Throughout the exhibit, the tour guide points out the dark lungs, which is caused by pollution and particularly present in those who smoke.

What makes the exhibit controversial is how the bodies are dissected like a three-dimensional showcase of our insides.

There are six exhibit halls, each named after a Greek deity, presenting the different systems of our body.

1. HERACLES | Muscular/ Skeletal System

This highlights the different muscles in our body, which includes the facial muscles that we use to smile.

2. POSEIDON | Respiratory System

This exhibit is dedicated to the smokers, showcasing the dark smokers’ lungs, and the lungs with cancer.

According to a survey by the University of Kassel in Germany, 9% of the viewers of the exhibit stopped smoking and drinking, and 25% started to exercise to stay healthy. (Source: Myth of the Human Body Official Website)

3. DIONYSUS | Digestive System

I found it interesting how our food is digested for 24 hours through the mouth, stomach and the intestines. A must-see for all foodies out there.

4. EROS | Reproductive System

This explains our reproductive system with an exhibit of plastinated genitals and what happens inside them. During this part of the tour, there is an old video explaining how babies are conceived until the point of their birth.

In a strange way, this is perfect for Valentine’s. A scientific approach to love. 🙂

5. ZEUS | Brain/ Nervous System

This showcases the different parts of the brain. They say the more wrinkles you have on your brain, the smarter you are (just like Einstein).

Sometimes, you’ll smell something different while walking through the exhibits, which is probably why there are buckets of charcoal around.

6. ARTEMIS | Fetal System

I found this exhibit a bit sick because of the disturbing sight of plastinated babies. 🙁 Although, it does have an informative presentation of the different stages of development of the fetus.

Photo by Richard Romano

This is one of the last exhibits, where a plastinated person carries the skin from his body.

This is the last hall where you can take souvenir photos. You can choose to go with the photo wall or put your face in the standee of plastinated cadavers.

Myth of the Human Body is open from 10.30 am to 8.30pm. You can buy the P350 tickets on the spot. There is a tour guide who shows you around the museum for about an hour.

Kids 3 years old and below are free. I would think twice about bringing kids as young as Aidan and Joshua here, though, because they could have nightmares.

I recommend it for its educational value. Just keep an open mind when you visit. 🙂 It runs until April 17, 2011. Don’t miss it!

Myth of the Human Body Exhibit (P350)
Operating time: 10:30 AM ~ 8:30 PM
Address: Neobabylon Bldg 9 Bayani Road AFPOVAI, Taguig City
Telephone:+632 889-5467 or 1724

Related Blog Post:
Everyday Sweet Notes | Myth of the Human Body: Fascinating or Disturbing Exhibit?
I Am Not A Blogger. | Myth of the Human Body


Live an Awesome Life,

Call or Text Me: +63917 5683-627 (LOVE-OAP)
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Full Disclosure: Nothing to disclose. We paid for our entrance fees. I’m not related to, connected with or compensated in any way by the establishment featured in this blog post. I’m not connected with, compensated by, or represented by any PR firm. Please email me at if any PR firm is claiming otherwise.

P.S. You’ll lose your appetite after seeing the exhibit. I suggest eating before going there. The best time to go is Sunday, so eat first at Mercato Centrale and then take the entire family and barkada to see the exhibit. 🙂 Pwede rin siya para sa kakaibang Valentine’s date…

29 thoughts on “Myth of the Human Body: A Review

  1. I agree, kids would have nightmares! But when a friend of mine visited during a weekend, kids were running around and touching the exhibits :O disturbing. anyway, very nice exhibit though but also disturbing.
    grabe, controversial nga yung link ng pose that you left here! 😛 nagulat ako

  2. this is like the body worlds exhibit in london. there should be more travelling exhibits like this, don’t you think? like in the singapore national museum where they regularly have exhibits from abroad — in the past they showcased the mummies of dead pharoahs as well as artifacts and remnants from the mt. vesuvius explosion. we were fortunate enough to catch them while we were there and i really, really enjoyed the experience. in a way, nakakainggit din sila kasi arts and culture are really promoted very well there and made very accessible to the public. the singapore national library is also a reader’s paradise. hay sana ganyan din dito rin sa phils!

  3. Why you keep lurking here Mr. Yadao? So di ka rin puedeng magreview ng movies pag di ka director/producer?
    Pag my panlasa ka, puede kang mag comment sa food. Kagaya sa movies you can go the opposite way, kung ayaw mo review ni Anton, then don’t go to the restaurants he likes or go to the ones he didn’t like.
    Mang Ernest naman, may pagka ID 10 T error ka naman po.

  4. another one of those people who joined the bandwagon of misinformed, crab minded misfits… it’s ironic why you read this blog anyway! if you don’t like it, feel free to leave!

  5. Yes, our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit… while we are living! I don’t believe the Holy Spirit will dwell among dead bodies. 🙂
    Just my two cents.

  6. Awesome. I saw and ad/poster in Shangri-La about this. I thought it’s just one of those usually boring exhibits for kids. Well, based on what I learned on this post, I think it’s worth seeing.
    Thanks for sharing!

  7. Hi, as a young doctor by profession, I can say that I was a bit disappointed with the tour guides. I do not expect them to know everything, nor are they supposed to since maybe (as I am not familiar with their qualifications) they are not medically oriented or maybe they just memorized their lines. But there was this one guide, the one on the second section (right after you take the stairs), tall, lanky, kinda feminine (i’m not saying he’s gay, i have nothing against gay people) who I think is a little “pa bibo”. He keeps telling the crowd about certain encounters with “his patients” (implying that he works in the medical profession), but he said some glaring errors that from the sound of his voice, are probably adlibs and not part of what they’re supposed to say). We also had a doctor in our crowd and he kept on acknowledging that person, sometimes ignoring the inquiries of other people. I may be nitpicking but I just don’t like the idea that people are given false informations just because some tour guide is “pa bibo”..
    Anyway, a few weeks later, a friend (who’s a nurse) told me that he got annoyed with a tour guide who fits the profile I described above. This time, they asked this guy if they can take their picture, and this guy said “Hmm, this is really not part of my job description but sige na nga”.. He then asked my friend’s group if they are “nursing students”, to which my friend replied “Hindi, RN na kami” With that, this tour guide said “A, RN din ako, from U*” (a certain university)..
    Ayun, overall, the exhibit was informative, parang crash course ng anatomy. All the other tour guides were wonderful though. Sana lang that one tour guide would really guide the visitors and not steal the limelight from the plastinized bodies. Unless gusto rin nyang mag paplastinize.. haha

  8. Hi Anton thanks for putting up a review of this place. I think it’s great they have this here because it’s very informative and an exhibit worth going to. I had the privilege to see Gunther von Hagens’ Body Worlds exhibit three years ago in Charlotte, NC and it was quite an experience! I felt bad my husband wasn’t there to see it but this exhibit looks to be a similat one that we will both enjoy. I hope the Mind Museum in BGC can bring this exhibit there or even the Body Worlds one. I agree with browneyedgirl that there should more traveling exhibits here where people can learn and I’m crossing my fingers that the Mind Museum would be the perfect venue for that.

  9. Hi Anton – I thought no picturetaking and cameras are allowed. How come you were able to take such nice pictures? Or were all this from the website of the exhibit? I think this is one of those informative exhibits which should be supported and visited by Filipinos. We should take the opportunity to view this here. In other countries, entry fees to such exhibits would be a lot more expensive.
    By the way, in view of the recent BBB controversy, you may wish to put back again your former disclaimer (whether you paid or been given a discount, etc., as it applies), in addition to your new one now. Such statements will state the facts more clearly, and hopefully, nip in the bud the malicious rumours that you are BBB. I have been reading your blog for a few years now and I have seen how you have improved and tried very hard to promote the Phils as a viable tourism destination. We need more young people like you to be passionate in the development of this country, so pls protect your credibility by putting upfront all the facts clearly and in a transparent manner. All the very best to your creative endeavours and God bless! 🙂

  10. The Awesome Photos were taken by Richard Romano which he originally posted in the Digital Photographer forum here — Awesome Photographer Richard Romano in the Digital Photographer forums.  I'm not related to him whatsoever and when I was searching he has the best photographs for the exhibit. 
    Thanks for the disclaimer tip. Yes, we paid for the fees P350/head 🙂 I reflected that in the disclosure na rin. 
    Salamat for the support, Carol!

  11. Someone said not to view this museum if you are planning on eating hainanese chicken rice afterwards, and I think I can see why 😛
    Still, I think it’s an interesting exhibit that should give some insight on how our body really is a complex machine that we should appreciate

  12. hello sir anton! may i ask, how do we get to the neobabylon building coming from edsa? we’re from bulacan and my husband and i are planning to take our kids to see this exhibit. we are not familiar with the area. thanks in advance!

  13. “DSLRs are not allowed inside the exhibit.”
    —DSLR lang po ba ang bawal? How about PnS or cellphone cams? Allowed po ba or totally bawal talaga kumua ng pics?

  14. Wow! pictures ko yun a. ahahaha! oks lang Anton. Shots ko yan before mag open for public yung exhibit. It was a totally different exhibit medyo creepy ayaw ko lang tagalan yung sa mga babies waaaa!
    Thanks for sharing my pics Anton, as long as I can see my name on it thats fine with me.
    richard t. romano

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