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Biomedicine in museums

Street Anatomy: another inspirational blog for medical museum curators

One of our new blog siblings is Street Anatomy: Medicine + Art + Design, created in December 2006 by Vanessa Ruiz,


a graduate student in the Biomedical Visualization programme at the University of Illinois (Chicago) — this is the largest medical illustration program in the US, with their own Virtual Reality in Medicine lab. A kind of ‘medicine on display’ programme.

As Vanessa points out, most of us tend to have a rather dated understanding of what ‘medical illustration’ is. I, for one, always thought of medical illustrators as people who could handle a pencil and a water colour brush. Not anymore: “they use their artistic skills combined with technology to produce dynamic visualizations” in the form of illustrations, graphics, animations, 3D models etc. Partly to educate medical doctors and students, but also to encourage the public’s engagement with medicine: “we persuade people to learn by engaging them with visual media that will educate them to take care of and maintain their bodies”.

Accordingly Vanessa’s blog is heavily illustrated — with a lot of stuff that medical museum curators could learn quite a few tricks from.

It will be exciting to learn more of what goes on in the field of medical illustration and biomedical visualisation. Does anyone know about other great sites in this field?

Thomas Söderqvist

Author Thomas Söderqvist

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