About the Exhibition
Science and art come together in anatomical illustrations and in contemporary art inspired by medical imagery. Seeing is Knowing: the Body celebrates the common goals of art and medical science: knowledge and understanding realized by visual means.
Focusing on the human body, this exhibition presents richly illustrated historical medical atlases along with new images by six contemporary artists. While the artists follow in the footsteps of Andreas Vesalius (1514-1564) and other pioneer anatomists, they also embrace the future by creatively transforming medical images from such sources as x-rays, CAT scans and MRIs.
In Seeing is Knowing, the body is presented from within and without. The artists alternatively embrace the whole and explore the parts on the way to reflecting on personal experience, identity, health and healing, gender, art-making processes and more. To further illustrate the continuity and change within anatomical imaging, the exhibit also features a selection of historical texts on loan from Carleton’s Gould Library Special Collections and from the Bakken Library and Museum in Minneapolis.
Artists Featured in Seeing is Knowing: the Body
- Justine Cooper, an Australian-born new media artist resident in Brooklyn, NY, creates a new type of self-portrait constructed from MRI scans of her body.
- Katherine Sherwood, based in the San Francisco Bay area, embeds her own post-stroke brain scans into heavily pigmented paintings which double as healing emblems.
- New Mexico artist Leigh Anne Langwell, who worked as a medical photographer for 17 years, simulates interior “bodyscapes” in photograms connecting the mysteries of the microscopic inner world with the cosmic reaches of outer space.
- Christine LoFaso, from Chicago, borrows pictures of bodily fluids and tissues from textbooks and then transfers these along with texts only billowing fabric, thereby stimulating subjective musings about social norms, personal identity and body image.
- Bay area artist Harry Clewans adopts anatomical illustrations as the matrix for creating extravagantly detailed, multi-layered woodblock print collages.
- Texan Eric Avery, both a practicing physician and artist, uses bold graphics in Art Actions to educate vulnerable publics and agitate for better health care in America.