Saturday, August 22, 2009

Human hybrids

It was pointed out again in the weird news that the photo at the top - which has been circulating on the Internet for several years now - is not an actual dog-human hybrid. It is a sculpture by Australian artist Patricia Piccinini, who explains in this video what her motivations were and why we find her work (made with, among other things, leather and human hair) so disturbing. You can see it here from other angles and navigate to her other installations by clicking on the images. The human-animal hybrid goes by many names: chimera (referring to the mythological creature made from parts of several animals), transgenic species or cybrid (scientific terms), and parahuman (a word often used to sensationalize the science). Humans and animals have been physically fused in many ways. Xenografts (transplantation of animal organs into humans) have been performed for many years. Since human skin cells and rabbit eggs were first grafted in 2003, 32-cell human-cow embryos have been engineered and a human ear has been grown from cartilage scaffolding on the back of a mouse (another photograph that got wide exposure on the web). Scientists have created pigs with human blood flowing through their veins, mice with a partially human brain, rats with human kidney tissue, and sheep with a largely human liver. Most of this experimentation is to research disease and to achieve living factories for customized lab-grown biopharmaceuticals, tissues, and organs. One of the points that Piccinini makes with her artwork is that it is no longer possible to distinguish between the natural and the artificial. But with this boundary blurred, the task is to set up ethical guidelines and draft legislation as science fiction becomes science fact.


  1. Thats weird!! It looks soooo GROSS! But we don't really know what dog-human hybrids look like. I wonder how she came up with the idea of how it looks! Truthfully, I don't think that dog-human hybrids can live in the world, because they wouldn't be made right and might not be able to live under our circumstances. Nevertheless, who would WANT to take care of one of those? LMAO!!

  2. It may look gross but it just shows what the human mind can come up with. hey you never know it just might happen or it might already happened out there some where and we don't know about it. besides every living creature deserves a chance to live, i find it that even the most ugly and gross things should have a chance to live. no matter the form or look all things deserve to be loved because its the heart that counts! besides you would be surprised what and who can live in the world we live in its just the question is will those of the human race give it the chance to live or will they be close minded instead of open minded and destroy the very life that humans may or may not had a hand in creating that being or life?


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