From 2010: CNN’s Jeanne Moos reports.
Sort-of related: When I lived in New York, I worked a block away from Time Warner Center (the building she’s standing outside of). I used to go over there to grab lunch at Whole Foods and I’d often see her standing outside interviewing people. She never stopped me, though. Sigh.
(Image via Oddity Central.)
Sokushinbutsu - Buddhist ritualistic self-mummification
For 1,000 days (a little less than three years) the priests would eat a special diet consisting only of nuts and seeds, while taking part in a regimen of rigorous physical activity that stripped them of their body fat. They then ate only bark and roots for another thousand days and began drinking a poisonous tea made from the sap of the Urushi tree, normally used to lacquer bowls. This caused vomiting and a rapid loss of bodily fluids, and most importantly, it made the body too poisonous to be eaten by maggots. Finally, a self-mummifying monk would lock himself in a stone tomb barely larger than his body, where he would not move from the lotus position. His only connection to the outside world was an air tube and a bell. Each day he rang a bell to let those outside know that he was still alive.
Yes, she’s dead, too. According to the photograph notes, this older child is dressed in a white gown and wedding veil, with a rosary and cross, to symbolize her being a pure “bride of Christ”.
Back braces, boards, and sometimes simply disguised assistants standing off to the sides were all utilized in creative ways by photographers, when the parents or relatives wanted the decedent propped up or standing up.
His cousin painted nubile beauties in flirtatious poses. He skinned, preserved, and posed dead bodies…
Honore Fragonard was not normal, by anyone’s definition. He was a gifted anatomist, a skilled artist, and a prodigious creator of his unique masterpieces known as écorchés, or “flayed figures.” He produced hundreds of these macabre teaching tools, intended to help medical students understand the inner workings of the human body at a time when dissection was discouraged, and most students learned only from illustrations. His creations, however, were more than anatomical models: they were gruesome works of three dimensional art.
Cousin to the more famous Jean-Honore Fragonard, painter, Honore instead pursued a path that led him to be appointed professor of anatomy at Paris’ first veterinary school. It was there that he developed his passion for the art of the cadaver.
His technique for his écorchés was revolutionary - and now lost - using a combination of lacquer, resin, and wax to preserve specimens of animals and man. His most disturbing works are undoubtedly his vignettes of flayed cadavers posed to emulate motifs from art and myth. Of those that remain, the most famous is his Horseman of the Apocalypse, a nightmarish semi-fleshed skeleton perched astride a similarly flayed galloping horse, said to have been inspired by Albrect Durer’s “Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.”
Strangely enough, at some point his employers at the hospital found his work to be a bit beyond their comfort zone, and he was dismissed as a madman. But, luckily for us, they did not throw everything away, and the next time you are in Paris you can stop by the visit the last of his creations.
Via Atlas Obscura
Syrian bishop’s remains (funeral). Corpse seated in church. Matson Photo Service, [1940-1946]. Source: Library of Congress.
Syrian bishop’s remains (funeral). Corpse seated in church. Matson Photo Service, [between 1940 and 1946]. Source: Library of Congress.
Great post from Atlas Obscura’s blog about the Corpse Bride of Portugal.
It may be awkward, but when the king tells you to kiss the hand of his dead mistress, you damn well kiss that cold, dead hand.
I just got this image and three people have commented that the man pictured had been hanged, but there is some missing emulsion by his neck that has the appearance of a rope. His head lolling to the side only enhances this look. The back of the cdv is not pictured, but there is the outline and paste remains of a stamp that had been removed, dating this image between 1864 and 1866.
ca. 1852, [post-mortem portrait of a young girl]
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