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Symposium „Human Anatomical Preparations in Conservation“

11. November 2021 - 12. November 2021

International Symposium November 11th and 12th 2021 at Dresden University of Fine Arts (HfBK) Degree Course in Conservation.

The aim of the symposium is to examine the current state of anatomical and pathological collections, specifically the human preparations stored and exhibited there.

For this purpose, curators, conservators, preparators and historians from numerous European countries will come together to address the following topics and questions: What was the significance of anatomical and pathological preparations in the respective historical context and what is their significance today? How does the transformation process of an actively-used teaching collection to a museum collection take place? What are the ethical requirements for the usage of human anatomical and pathological preparations for teaching and exhibition purposes today? What questions arise from this with regard to the preservation, conservation and restoration of human anatomical preparations? What influence do the historical manufacturing, preparation and conservation techniques of anatomical specimens have on the current state of preservation and to what extent have these contexts been researched at all? What expertise is available today and how can curators, preparators, conservators-restorers, etc. work together for a better preservation of anatomical preparations and collections in the future?

The symposium will be held in cooperation with Verband der Restauratoren e.V. (VDR) and Verband Deutscher Präparatoren e.V. (VDP).

Flyer: "Human Anatomical Preparations. History, Manufacturing Techniques and Ethics in Conservation" (pdf)


Start: 11th November 2021, 3:00 p.m.

End: 12th November 2021, 10:30 p.m.


Find the symposium program here (german) or here (english).


Due to the unpredictable course of the COVID-19 pandemic, all participants will have the opportunity to take part in the symposium online or in presence. All lectures and discussions will take place in the auditorium of the Dresden University of Fine Arts, additionally will be streamed and simultaneously translated English-German/German-English. French interpreters will be available for the discussions.

The symposium will end with an evening event, during which the historical Anatomical Collection of the Dresden University of Fine Arts, which was reopened in 2019, can be visited.


Participation in the symposium is possible by registration via: HAP[at] (Ms.Huhn).

Picture credits

Burkhard Wilhelm Seiler, 1850 (HfBK Dresden Archiv).


11. November 2021
12. November 2021