19 May 2015

Drawing on Tuesday - at the Wellcome Collection

As well as its permanent collections displaying some of the items collected by Henry Wellcome, who founded the pharmaceutical company that has been so profitable since, and another gallery with some modern art related to health and the body, the Wellcome Collection has exhibitions (currently: Forensics) and now has a Reading Room with more art on display ... more of that another time perhaps.

First a few photos from the Medicine Man exhibition "a cross-section of extraordinary objects from his collection, ranging from diagnostic dolls to Japanese sex aids, and from Napoleon's toothbrush to George III's hair" which "provides a very different perspective on some of our own obsessions with medicine and health."

African figurines showing diseases

Forceps from the 18th and 19th centuries

After some sharing of photos of interesting things
"the reveal" -
Mike found expedition medicine chests supplied by Burroughs Wellcome Co (as it was then)

Caryl was captivated by a glass model of the MRSA bacterium

Jo went beyond observation, to abstraction
Janet used "blind drawing" as a warm-up for the more detailed drawing

Mags collected hands from a display of 19th-century prosthetic limbs
My work for the day involved rather a lot of blind drawing in my A5 notebook - first as a warm-up (and a way to choose something to spend more time on) -
It extended to drawing the same object over and over, without looking at the page (except to place the next object) -

Bleeding bowl and early binaural stethoscopes
African wood carvings and several views of a trepanned skull dating to 2000 BC
Flasks and bottles
Finally, something that looks a bit more "real" -
and a drawing in the A4 sketchbook, from the lowest shelf of glass jars - I was pleased that it does look like glass -
My favourite from the day is the bleeding bowl, made with four lines in about 10 seconds. Just lucky.

1 comment:

Charlton Stitcher said...

I love blind drawing as a technique and use it a lot, sometimes to warm up and other times just because it feels the right thing to do to evoke the essence of a thing.
I love your collection here, especially the bleeding bowl and the stethoscopes but also those wonderfully wonky African carvings. Such fun!