Museum of Morbid Anatomy Opens Saturday with Exhibit on Mourning

By Nikhita Venugopal on June 25, 2014 5:49pm 

 Joanna Ebenstein, founder of the Morbid Anatomy Library, is opening a full-fledged museum in Gowanus. Her collection includes medical models, taxidermy, vintage photos of funerals, and other items that explore the intersection of death, art and history.
Joanna Ebenstein, founder of the Morbid Anatomy Library, is opening a full-fledged museum in Gowanus. Her collection includes medical models, taxidermy, vintage photos of funerals, and other items that explore the intersection of death, art and history.
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DNAinfo/Leslie Albrecht

GOWANUS — Death is knocking at Brooklyn’s door.

The Morbid Anatomy Museum — a 4,200-square-foot space described as being dedicated to “artifacts and ideas which fall between the cracks of high and low culture, art and science, beauty and death” — will officially open this Saturday.

The museum, located on Third Avenue near Seventh Street, will feature “never-before exhibited materials” from private collectors for its first display, “The Art of Mourning,” which includes post-mortem photography, hair art shadowboxes and jewelry, memorial cards, mourning paraphernalia, death masks and spirit photography. 

For enthusiasts of the macabre, the museum will be hosting a grand opening pre-party on Friday with a sneak preview of the exhibit, talks by curators and collectors, as well as wine and traditional mourning foods. Tickets to the event are priced at $35 for members and $50 for guests.

Creative director Joanna Ebenstein started the Morbid Anatomy blog in 2007 and then launched the Morbid Anatomy Library from the arts organization Proteus Gowanus in 2008, she previously told DNAinfo New York.

“The Art Of Mourning is the perfect exhibition with which to open the museum,” Ebenstein said in a statement.

“It represents everything we stand for: excavating artworks and artifacts which reside at the intersections of death and beauty, and exploring forgotten rituals and histories, which may seem bizarre or even morbid to the contemporary eye."

The museum will feature both permanent and temporary exhibitions, workshops, an expanded research library as well as regular film and lecture series.

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 The museum seeks to exhibit the "uncanny and overlooked," organizers say.
Museum of 'Morbid Anatomy' Opening in Gowanus
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