With The Modern Spirit is Vivisective Francesca Catastini embarks on a visceral and cutting-edge journey inside the human body, to play with and unmask misleading beliefs of the past. Catastini takes the anatomical theatres as her starting point. The lost functionality of these spaces, suspended in a remote limbo between the carnality of death and the quest for knowledge, leads her to embrace dissection and vivisection, metaphorically, as an aesthetic performance.

Presented as a cornucopia of materials, her found photographs of old anatomy laboratories and blind students mingle with appropriated frontispieces of Renaissance anatomy manuals and her austere yet ironical images. Together, the materials form a telescopic structure divided into overlapping sections relating to the various actions involved in every dissection: on looking, on touching, on cutting and on discovering.
Federica Chiocchetti