Visitors photographing the sacred statue of Easter Island Hoa Hakananai'a.

Room 24

Living and Dying

The Wellcome Trust Gallery

Visiting the gallery

Opening times

Daily: 10.00–17.00 (Fridays: 20.30)
See full opening hours

Advance booking advised

Gallery audio guides

Listen on the Audio app, available on the App Store and Google Play.

This gallery explores how people everywhere deal with the tough realities of life and death.

These challenges are shared by all, but strategies to deal with them vary from place to place, people to people.

The central installation by Pharmacopoeia, called Cradle to Grave, looks at an approach to health and wellbeing, describing the medical histories of a typical man and woman in Britain today.

People throughout the world deal with the tough realities of life in many different ways. The displays in Room 24 explore different approaches to our shared challenges as human beings, focusing on how diverse cultures seek to maintain health and wellbeing.

Take a virtual tour

Discover a fascinating collection of objects that explore living and dying across the world in Room 24, including Hoa Hakananai'a from Easter Island.

Easter Island statue on display in the gallery. ©2020 Google


  • Large print guides are available on Australia and New Zealand – Maori.
  • Some objects in this collection feature on the British Sign Language multimedia guide. This resource is temporarily unavailable. You can access a selection of BSL films on your own device.
  • Some objects in this collection feature on the audio description guide, available on Soundcloud.
  • Seating is available.
  • Step-free access.
  • View sensory map.

Visit Accessibility at the Museum for more information.