Those seeking a creepy cultural experience this Halloween season should look no further than the Morbid Anatomy Museum in Gowanus.
On Friday, the museum launches “House of Wax: Anatomical, Pathological, and Ethnographic Waxworks,” curated by Ryan Matthew Cohn, of the Discovery Channel’s “Oddities.” The works originate from Berlin, 1869 to 1992.
“These artifacts are 19th century and probably older anatomical sculptures,” said Jen Bandini, a 40-year-old Brooklyn photographer who also volunteers at the museum. “Like really beautiful women laid out with their stomachs sliced open.”
The exhibit will be on display through February.
“House of Wax” follows the popular “Opus Hypnagogia: Sacred Spaces of the Visionary and Vernacular,” a fusion of historical, outsider and visionary art, and showcases items such as two-headed ducklings, child-size coffins, and a vial of valerian root oil (said to have magical properties).
This will be the first time “House of Wax” has been shown in the United States.
The exhibition will include artifacts from Castan’s Panopticum, such as “death masks of celebrities and murderers; ethnographic busts; recumbent female waxes, wax models showing the effects of syphilis, as well as assorted curiosities.”
Bandini says the museum has attracted a wide range of people since it first opened a little over a year ago.
“I thought it would attract just freaky people, but it’s curious people too, a lot of people even bring their kids,” she said.
In addition to exhibits, the Morbid Anatomy Museum hosts a number of popular lectures each month.
Cristina Preda, office manager at the museum, recommends “A History of Ectoplasm,” an illustrated lecture taking place on Oct. 29 at 8 p.m.
The event costs $8 and will focus on a series of photographs from a community of registered “mediums” in upstate New York.
The photographs demonstrate proof of a “life beyond this one,” according to Preda.
This coming Sunday, the museum will be hosting Erika Larsen, a National Geographic photographer. Larsen will present photographs of the Sàmi, the indigenous people of Northern Scandinavia, who herd reindeer in the arctic. The event goes from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. and costs $5.
Tonight, the museum will show a collection of short films, “Shorts — Eternal Specimens & Invented Organs,” as part of the Imagine Science Film Festival. The screening from 7 to 10 p.m. in the museum’s event space costs $7.