House of Wax Opening Party, with curator Ryan Matthew Cohn of the Science Channel's "Oddities" & Special Guests, Sponsored by Hendrick's Gin
Date: Friday, October 23
7:00 PM VIP admission $50/$40 members
8:00 PM Regular Admission $40/$30 members
( Use drop down menu in ticket section under date to select VIP (7 PM) or Regular (8 PM) ticket )
*** Sponsored by Hendricks Gin !
Location: Morbid Anatomy Museum, 424 Third Avenue, 11215 Brooklyn NY
Tonight, please join us for an first view of our new exhibition "House of Wax: Anatomical, Pathological and Ethnographic Waxworks from Castan's Panopticum, Berlin 1869-1922.
Curated by Ryan Matthew Cohn of TV's "Oddities" and staged in conjunction with Alamo Drafthouse with introductory text by Dr. Peter M. McIsaac, Professor of German and Museum Studies at The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, this exhibition will exhibit a selection of waxworks once shown as part of Castan's Berlin-based Panopticum (1869-1922).
Panopticum were popular throughout Europe from the 18th through the early 20th century. Like the dime museums and popular anatomical museums of the US, these largely forgotten spaces fall somewhere between aristocratic cabinets of curiosity and today's ideas of museums. Castan's was a typical panopticum of its day, displaying for a popular audience anatomical and pathological waxworks; real human specimens; death masks of celebrities and murderers; ethnographic busts; Anatomical Venues, or recumbent female waxes displaying the mysteries of generation; wax models showing the effects of syphilis (still a fatal disease at this time) as well as assorted curiosities such as "elephant tusks, mummies, stuffed alligators, and gorillas." They also presented live acts including singers, dancers, ventriloquists, hunger artists, and even living "freaks and ethnic 'rarities'" (Source: "Living Pictures, Missing Persons: Mannequins, Museums, and Modernity," Mark B. Sandberg, Princeton University Press).
Note: Viewer discretion is advised as some of the artifacts in this show are graphic in nature, including nudity and antiquated approaches to race. We believe that it is our duty as a cultural and educational institution to critically display items that may otherwise be ignored or erased from cultural memory.
More about the exhibition can be found here: http://morbidanatomymuseum.org/exhibitions/house-of-wax/
At 7:00, we will begin the VIP portion of the evening, which will feature a champagne toast and a tour of the new exhibition with curator Ryan Matthew Cohn.
Regular admission will begin at 8:00 PM and will feature complimentary wine and cocktails and talks in the space by curator Ryan Matthew Cohn, Morbid Anatomy Museum Creative Director Joanna Ebenstein, Rebecca Messbarger, author of "The Lady Anatomist," and scholar Betsy Bradley, author of "At the Human Zoo: A Sampling of Ethnographic Exhibitions on the Modern World". DJ Friese Undine will play arcane tunes, and David Corey will curate thematic antique film clips.
Morbid Anatomy Museum (View)
424 A Third Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11215