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The Oregon Museum of Science and Industry continues through Sept. 13 in Portland.

COURTESY PHOTO - For the third time, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry plays host to a 'Body Worlds' exhibit. The plastination process produces a striking body image: Natural fluids in the specimen are replaced with liquid reactive plastics that are hardened and cured with gas, light or heat.

They're back!

The wondrous plastination creations of Gunther von Hagens return to Portland, as "Body Worlds & The Cycle of Life" opens at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry on Saturday, March 7, and continues through Sept. 13.

The anatomical exhibition series "Body Worlds," developed to educate about the inner workings of the human body and reveal effects of healthy and unhealthy lifestyles, has been seen by more than 50 million people, including twice before at OMSI.

The newest exhibit is different because it focuses on the human life cycle, capturing the body at every stage from birth to old age — health, growth, maturation, distress and decline.

Highlights are:

• More than 100 specimens specially curated for the exhibit, exposing individual organs and systems and portraying full-body plastinates in various poses.

• A look at conception and prenatal development, featuring a multimedia display on cell division and a collection of plastinates acquired from historical anatomical collections.

• "The Artists' Gaze" — an exploration of the sight and vision of artists Claude Monet and Edgar Degas, who suffered from cataracts and retinal eye disease.

• Centennial Village — a feature on findings from geographic clusters that are home to the longest-living people on Earth, from Okinawa, Japan, to Ovodda, Sardinia, to the Hunza region of Pakistan.

Von Hagens established the Institute for Plastination in 1983, six years after inventing the process. He relies on body donations.

Plastination replaces the natural fluids in the specimen with liquid reactive plastics that are hardened and cured with gas, light or heat. Before hardening the plastic, the plastinates are fixed into extraordinary, lifelike poses without the use of glass barriers or formaldehyde.

Tickets to "Body Worlds & The Cycle of Life" are $26 for adults, $18 for youth (ages 3-13) and $22 for seniors (63-over). OMSI is located at 1945 S.E. Water Ave.

For more: omsi.edu.


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