The Vivisected Engineer combined with David by Michelangelo
Though studied for centuries in various cultures, the fields of anatomy and experimental physiology began to progress around 300 B.C. Scientific studies involving the vivisection and dissection of animals including those conducted by notable scientists such as Aristotle, Galen, and Vesalius.
While Greek law prohibited the dissection of human bodies, physician and medical researcher Galen performed countless animal dissections and vivisections (circa 168 A.D.) and claimed that he dissected animals almost every day of his career—not only to enhance his surgical skills but also to learn more about the human body.
Though animal and human dissections were used to educate medical students, artists such as Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo, who wanted to learn to illustrate their subjects with better accuracy, also conducted dissections. They were also performed simply to illustrate the contents of ancient scientific texts.
In the 1500s, Andreas Vesalius, considered to be the founder of modern human anatomy, felt strongly that dissection should be performed as a way to accurately teach students about anatomy instead of using illustrations or descriptions in books, as well as to gain new knowledge. Vesalius appears to have set the foundation for dissection as a teaching and research tool.
David’s laboratory has a gothic victorian feel, with medical illustrations meticulously documented just as Leonardo Da Vinci & Michelangelo had studied the human anatomy and flora & fauna. David is a founder/creator of the Facehugger/Ovomorph anatomy.
The shape of the Scorpion Tail(Mother Ship) docking ship is also the same as the centre hemisphere of the brain called the Corpus Callosum, which is responsible for transporting fluid between both hemispheres of the brain. In the Advent clip David is seen injecting Black Ooze onto this section of the Neomorph’s Brain.
Like many other pieces in Alien: Covenant this theme of vivisection and flayed being has inspired many incarnations.
Read more about The Art and Anatomy of St. Bartholomew