Our aversion to displays of human remains is a decidedly modern notion. Medieval societies developed an entire tourist industry around the trade, exhibition, and access to the body parts of saints. Relics were considered a porous window to the divine, and thus, veneration of them was an act of piety. The medieval notion of God was that of a King ruling his loyal servants. Access to Saints’ body parts allowed the lowly peasant to still worship God, yet not approach him directly, as was befitting his station. Far from being morbid, a town that housed a saintly relic was a site of pilgrimage that boosted the economy. The more high profile the saint, the better.
Today human bones are displayed mostly only on Halloween, and otherwise commonly considered a morbid and odd fascination with death. The following tables are by various designers, but with a common theme. They show the human skeleton’s elegant lines, our foundation beneath the flesh.