Friday, June 24, 2011
The Supplement: The écorchés of Honoré Fragonard
Mixing science and art, the 'flayed figures' of 18th century french anatomist Honoré Fragonard. Yep, these are real human bodies:
"...preserved, injected, partially dissected bodies in lifelike, dramatic poses, with ragged strips of muscle draped like primitive clothing over exposed vessels and nerves. The effect is eerie - like a Vesalius illustration sprung to (half-)life"
"a body, chosen for its leanness, had its large superficial veins cut in several places to drain it of blood, and then it was washed and placed in a heated water bath to warm it in preparation for the injections into the heart and vessels. The substance injected was a mixture of resin, tallow, oil, and beeswax and was stained red for the arteries, blue for the veins. . . . Once the body had been injected, it was then dissected as rapidly as possible before decomposition set in."