The Resurrectory

Performed At the Portland Art Center, May-June 2005.

The Resurrectory was a live action facility created by Liminal Performance Group to investigate the science, spirituality and commerce of death (both real and fictional). However, the actual function of the Resurrectory was only known to those who worked in it. To the visiting observer, the meaning of this macabre performance, musical lecture, museum of artifacts, and collection of oddities may never be completely clear. It was a puzzle for the mind and senses. The Resurrectory layered romantic views of the human body as a sacred object, with materialist views of the body as a scientifically explained system. 

A central component of The Resurrectory was the reenactment of the infamous Burke & Hare case of 1827-1828 in Edinburgh, Scotland. While in operation, Resurrectory staff reenacted the murders of Burke & Hare's nine victims in order to learn more about what motivated their demise, how they literally died, and how their bodies became employed in the service of modern medical science. At the same time, an anatomist and four digital musicians presented an anatomy theatre lecture to describe the physical (and metaphysical) process of death with a three-dimensional film.

Photos by Basil Childers.


The Resurrectory
Artweek, July/August 2005, Vol. 36, issue 6

The Resurrectory
Portland Mercury, June 2, 2005

Grisly glimpses and compulsions
The Oregonian, May 13, 2005

Dead Cool
Willamette Week, May 11, 2005

Death, drama, deconstruction
Portland Mercury, May 4, 2005

The Resurrectory
Portland Tribune, May 5, 2005