Welcome to The Body Electric, the annual digital art exhibit showcased during the International Conference on Residency Education.
We would like to begin by acknowledging that the land on which we gather is the unceded territory of the Coast Salish peoples, including the territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.
The 2015 exhibit, curated by Dr. Allison Crawford, Dr. Lisa Richardson, and Ms. Bryn Ludlow, explored the conference theme of ‘transformation’ by asking artists to consider wonder, discovery, transformation and the creative body in relation to medicine. The exhibit included international submissions by artists and health care practitioners across a variety of media. The Body Electric understands art as a medical intervention, which offers a set of practices for meaning-making, looking, and reflecting, through which we can stand in new relations with the subjects and object of medicine.
In addition to its captivating video of curated art work, the 2015 exhibit also included the “Cabinet of Medical Curiosities”; a digital narrative account that maps medicine’s history of discovery:
Lia Pas is a Saskatoon-based interdisciplinary performer-creator who makes work with a focus on mind-body states as text, sound, movement, and image. Her current project as librettist, composer, and performer with La Caravan Dance Theatre is a dance opera titled Fihi ma Fihi (it is what it is).
Alison Philpott is an award winning coloured pencil artist. Currently residing in Langley, BC. With her pencils she seeks to achieve photo-realistic representations of ordinary things, while also enjoying the occasional challenge of more unusual subjects! In her spare time Alison, teaches an expressive art class at a nearby prison.
Amir Kavehei is a Toronto-based illustrator originally from Iran. Amir graduated from OCAD University in the illustration program. He was born in Iran and grew up with King Crimson and Radiohead’s music. Thus, he is interested in political and social subject matters. His projects are usually about social stigma, homophobia, and racism.
Iva Dulanovic is an artist and designer and recent graduate of the Ontario College of Art and Design University where she was the 2015 medal winner for her outstanding creation of Anicca in the Material Art and Design program. She recently presented Anicca in the 100th OCADU exhibition in Toronto.
Kayla Simms, MD., Cand. (UOttawa)
Kayla is the founder of the student-led initiative “Humanities Education, Artistic Living” (H.E.A.L.); creating space in medical education for the health humanities.
Nathaniel Westley’s artistic practice is an exercise in asking difficult questions that require a certain amount of vulnerability, both from himself as the artist, and from the viewer. In-tension uses the relationship between musician and instrument as an allegory to explore the shortcomings of the body in performing identity.
Tracy Meyer is an instructional designer, writer, and visual artist based in the United States. The images selected for The Body Electric are from a body of work on paper inspired by seeds, Corpus Delicti. Tracy is absorbed currently in designing and developing virtual patient simulations for healthcare professionals.
Lisa Boivin is a member of the Deninu K’ue First Nation in NT. She is an interdisciplinary artist and a bioethics specialist at the University of Toronto. Lisa strives to humanize clinical medicine through image-based storytelling, as she situates her art in the Indigenous continuum of passing knowledge through images.
Amrit Singh, R.Ac (Registered Acupuncturist)
Amrit Singh has been studying and practicing acupuncture for over eight years. She completed her Diploma at ITM in Toronto, after which she extended her studies in Beijing, Tokyo, San Francisco and New York. Her passion for acupuncture extends beyond the clinic to her acupuncture photography and educational community programming.
Elizabeth King is a Program Assistant in the Department of Pediatrics at Queen’s University, and a mother of 4. She is a self-taught artist who has a particular interest in abstract expressionist painting. ‘Marian’ explores the theme of a woman absorbing the myriad internal & external messages and experience of approaching menopause.
Eoin Kelleher is an anaesthesia trainee from Dublin, Ireland. When not putting people to sleep, he creates illustrations and cartoons, often dealing with topical medical issues. His work is features regularly in Irish medical and current affairs publications.
Cancer and a faith rooted in God have shaped my artistic practice, serving as both a catalyst and foundation for my work as it strives to manifest a sense of spirituality and mystery while being grounded in the familiar and scientific. A fascination with microscopic life forms continually reflects in my work, often manifested through the use of biomorphic shapes and patterns.
Exhibited internationally, Jack Butler’s hybrid practice uses the means and methods of visual art to produce research in three domains: medical science, collaborations with Inuit artists, and a life-long studio practice at the intersection of art, science and cultural difference.
Raven Crow is an Aboriginal/Metis spiritual healer, ceremony leader, and an artist. Raven also survived multiple strokes and seizures.
Kirsten Schaefer creates art that is inspired by design, ethical, and political challenges in the fashion industry. Her work challenges complacency in consumers and encourages more engaged and aware consumption.
I have a professional and academic background in the natural sciences and design. As a queer man issues of biological sex, gender identity and sexual orientation are personal, political and a part of the wonder of nature.
Julien Poitras, MD
Julien Poitras, vice-doyen responsabilité sociale, Faculté de médecine, Université Laval, médecin d’urgence CHAU Hôtel-Dieu de Lévis, bachelier en Arts visuels. J’utilise le corps humain comme objet d’activités artistiques (peinture, dessin, BD, etc). Published in “The fumettos the Cyclops” (Éditions Trip, ISBN 978-0-9864712-2-3), this work deals with the transformation of the body / mind through the course of disease.
Samantha Theriault (MD Cand., UOttawa)
Historically, medical documentation and research began with visual representations of anatomical figures in simple mediums such as ink and paper. “The Hand” depicts a traditional approach to scientific illustration. Inspired by Netter’s “Atlas of Human Anatomy”, these drawings of the right hand portray the complex relationship between muscular, skeletal, vascular, and nervous components of the artists’ dominant hand.
Dr. Kaisu Koski is an artist-researcher whose art practice is intertwined with academic research. She focuses on the dialogue between art and medicine, arts-based medical education and the methodology of arts-based research. Kaisu’s current project develops arts-based trigger videos for problem-based learning in medical curricula in Finland, Denmark and the U.S.
Saneea Abboud, MD
This painting portrays the vulnerability of a physician. Physicians are pushed and pressured by society to be a certain way. I believe it resonates with the theme of the conference “Residency Rediscovered: Transforming Training For Modern Care” as it reminds physicians that they are Human Beings first and Doctors, second. I’m a young physician having just completed training in Palliative Care. I have a passion for the arts and medicine and I approach my artistic practice with one thought in mind – to portray beauty, and to trigger emotion and wonder within.
The art collection “Superhumains.ch” is the result of a science communication project launched by the University of Zurich, which aim was to educate, inform and dialogue with high school students about bioethical issues regarding the use of emerging technologies on humans. The works by artists, Margaux Fournier, Lea Favre, and Jasmin Thomsen are presented in “The Body Electric”.
*Listed in the order of appearance in the exhibit.