Medicine and Art

I have always been fascinated by the exploration of the depictions of illness and healing in the famous artworks through human history, that range from Egyptian wall carvings to medieval manuscripts, and from paintings and sculpture by the great masters of the Renaissance such as Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci to twentieth-century artists such as Matisse and Magritte.

Those art masterpieces cover the examination of patients and their various maladies including disabilities and mental illnesses; healing and medical treatments; and the sufferings of patients and their hopes for cures and recovery. Psychological anguish—as represented in The Expulsion of Adam and Eve by Masaccio and Munch's The Scream—is treated along with the physical manifestations of pain.

I always love to play the rules of both an art historian and a practicing physician who can explore the cultural context in which specific artworks were created and the level of technical knowledge available at that time, an approach that makes for a fascinating look at many topics in both medical and artistic worlds.

I have a huge digital library of those masterpieces displaying the fine connection between medicine and art. My library includes also a large number of hard copy books on the related literature and is ever expanding. You can find some of these famous artworks below, and many more in the Medical Philately Facebook page.

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© 2017 by Dr Amir Monir