Human Bodies The Exhibition

In 1987, Albert Barillé and his production studio in Paris, Procidis, created what would become one of the most successful educational animated series in history: Once upon a time… Life: The Human Body.

The show revolutionised the audio-visual world thanks to its unique combination of entertainment and learning, with an educational approach that had never been used before.

That same year, Albert Barillé met Jesús Ferreiro through his work as a journalist. That was when the idea of recreating the world of the series in an exhibition came up, but at that time there were no adequate technical means of obtaining and displaying realistic pieces.

Finally, twenty years after the idea arose, and thanks to the plastination technique, making this old dream come true became a possibility. The creative team at Musealia and the pedagogical team at Procidis have worked together to create one of the best museum experiences ever seen.

Once upon a time… Life: The Human Body is different from other exhibitions with real pieces in its human perspective. The exhibition aims to show visitors not only what our body is like and how it works, but it also attempts to reflect on the experience of life through a journey that begins with the human development gallery and ends with the conception of a new life.

Guided for each person with the use of an audio-tour, visitors are guided through the interior of the exhibition through a voice, music and sound effects on a fascinating journey to explore the inside of the human body, learning to look after their health and preventing diseases.

“Please visit: in order to learn more about the exhibition.”


The exhibition

The exhibition is structured in 8 different galleries:

  • Human Development
  • Skeletal System / The Skeleton
  • Muscular System
  • Respiratory System
  • Circulatory System
  • Digestive System
  • Nervous System
  • Urinary-Reproductive System

The exhibition represents a journey through our body in which we can see over 100 individual organs and 10 full bodies. All the pieces have been treated with the plastination technique, allowing our visitors to get a close inside into the world that lies beneath our skin.

The audio-tour, available in different languages, will provide all the information required to understand how our body works, and how we take good care of it.

The exhibition’s clear educational focus is even more evident when one pays close attention to the consequences that bad habits such as smoking, drinking alcohol and obesity have on our health. Therefore, in the exhibition one can see healthy organs compared to organs from ill people. Seeing the black lungs of a smoker next to the healthy ones is a clear manner of understanding the consequences that our actions have on our bodies.



Exhibition floor plan


The plastinations

The exhibition displays over 100 individual human organs and 10 complete bodies, carefully chosen to illustrate the most important parts of our body.

Thanks to plastination techniques, these organs can be displayed and their original appearance is maintained. Each plastination has been selected by the educational team for its scientific interest.

Likewise, they are displayed as carefully and respectfully as possible, to prevent any kind of controversy, seeking only educational and scientific purposes.

The bodies and organs displayed in the exhibition are mostly from Asian origin. Musealia obtains these pieces guaranteeing to use them for the mentioned purposes, and through their public display, it manages to create awareness, promote health and good habits.

Since these pieces can only be displayed for scientific and educational means, the company has reached an agreement with the University of Murcia (the exhibition’s scientific and medical advisor). Once the exhibition is has finalized its tour, the pieces will be donated to the University, which will use them as pedagogical tools in the education of new generations of medical professionals.

It is the only exhibition that displays plastinations done in Spain, in the excellent lab that runs the Scientific Director of the exhibition, Dr. Rafael Latorre, at the University of Murcia.




Scientific and educational quality

In order to assure the scientific quality of the exhibition, Musealia decided to form the best possible technical team. Therefore, it has reached scientific consulting agreements with the following institutions, all of them leaders in their fields:

  • University of Murcia, Spain
  • University of Extremadura, Spain
  • University of Tennessee, USA
  • Minimally Invasive Surgery Centre Jesús Usón, Spain

Therefore, the scientific rigour at the exhibition is guaranteed, along with the educational work by the team that created the television series and Musealia’s creative efforts.


Tecnical characteristics

These are the exhibition´s more relevant technical information:

  • Area: 800 – 1,100 square metres
  • Electrical power: Approximately 5,000 kW
  • Temperature: 18-23 ºC
  • Humidity: up to 70%
  • Security: Normal surveillance
  • Installation time: 10 days
  • Minimum height: 3 metres
  • Recommended exhibition period: 6 months