Joanna Ebenstein

March 1, 2011


Joanna Ebenstein presents

Anatomical Venuses, Slashed Beauties, and Three Fetuses Dancing a Jig:
An Illustrated Journey into the Curious World of Medical Museums

In April 2007 Joanna Ebenstein created a fascinating blog, Morbid Anatomy, where she has since been "surveying the interstices of art and medicine, death and culture." Medical museums, like the Dittrick, provide much of the content for Morbid Anatomy. But Ebenstein has cast her net still further, exploring arcane and curious collections across Europe and the UK. She'll be sharing with us her take on the often macabre and sometimes beautiful fruit of that search. From wax moulages of syphilitics in Paris to obstetric models in Bologna, and from pathology specimens in London to fetal skeletons in Leiden, Ebenstein explores the wonder of things found in medical museums. In the process, she will offer insights on the psychology of collecting, and reveal the secret life of objects and collections in these intriguing spaces.

Lecture: 6:00 PM Powell Room, 2nd floor, Reception: 7:00 PM, in the Percy Skuy Gallery, of the Dittrick Medical History Center and Museum (Allen Memorial Medical Library, 11000 Euclid Avenue).

Please RSVP by February 25th, phone 216-368-3648, or e-mail

                                                                                                Parking is available in the visitors lot under Severance Hall

      Joanna Ebenstein, photo by Shannon Taggart