28
Sep
08

Two great free exhibitions

Took advantage of the sunny London day yesterday and caught two special exhibits at the 11th hour.

The first was London Through A Lens at the Getty Images gallery. Getty Images are impressive enough, but this series – of London events both iconic and mundane – is really excellent. I won’t spoil it for you (you can read what some of them are at the link above); you should go see them yourself. Yesterday was meant to be the exhibit’s last, but it’s been popular enough that they’re going to bring it back from 29 October to 22 November. It’s free! Put it in your calendars to go take a look.

The second was Skeletons at the Wellcome Collection. I’ve been meaning to check out more of this museum’s displays on the human body, but this exhibit was the one that drew me in. It’s made up of skeletons that have been unearthed around London as new building and renovation takes place. There are remains from Roman times right up to the 19th century, with explanations about their sex, age, health and lifestyle inferred from the bones. Some suffered from syphilis, one had a head injury, one had bone cancer, one had a visible but obviously non-fatal arrowhead in his spine (!) that had healed over. Spitalfields Market was a treasure-trove of skeletons, apparently, since the Romans used it for a cemetery over 1600 years ago and it was a hospital in medieval times. In addition, there’s a photograph of the site that produced each skeleton as they are today. Really good, and free, but – sorry – it ends today.

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