The 2022 student exhibition – BODIES, created by 70 anthropology students from Aarhus University – is now showing.

In this exhibition, the contributing anthropology students invite visitors to explore six different perspectives on the human body. They hope this year’s exhibition will give rise to reflections on how we think about the body.

“When you get right down to it, what is a body, really? What characterizes a body, and what things set bodies apart? We all have a body. It’s the place where we belong – our abode – and also the tool that enables us to move around in the world. It’s the sensory apparatus we use to navigate among huge amounts of different impressions, signs and signals,” says Anders Cletus Petersen, a student at Aarhus University who is working toward his bachelor’s degree. “Then again, the body is so much more than this.”


See the human body presented in a wide variety of ways

This exhibition presents visitors with views of the body that range from the activistic body, used as a tool in the fight for change, to the staged body, which through the art of ballet is meticulously and aesthetically trained and shaped in the quest for the perfect silhouette. The body’s inner life becomes visible in the section dealing with the bodily anchoring of emotions in those who lose their loved ones, and also in the section that treats feelings related to having a body that falls outside the categorizing societal norms that define “ordinary” or “typical” bodies. In another section, guests can expect to encounter glitter and feather boas, as it investigates the borders between body and gender, using drag artists as its medium. And in a section revolving around microplastics in the body, the exhibition asks whether people really decide for themselves what substances enter their body, and whether the boundary between body and world is as clear-cut as one might think.

The student exhibition builds on information and materials collected by the students themselves, in the field and – in some cases – from working with their own bodies. The material is rooted in genuine people and contexts as seen by the anthropological eye, whose curious gaze looks at how the human body interacts with the world around it. The student exhibition is a collaboration between Moesgaard Museum and the Department of Anthropology at Aarhus University.

“BODIES” – under the Danish title “KROPPE” – will be showing at Moesgaard Museum in Denmark until 18 September 2022.