Albany Museum of Art curator Merritt Giles, left, and Executive Director Nick Nelson stand beside an original Norman Rockwell drawing entitled “Before The Shot.” The Museum recently opened its “The Art of Health and Healing” exhibition which features artwork created by local physicians. The show is sponsored by Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital and is part of the hospital’s Centennial Celebration.
ALBANY — The Albany Museum of Art recently opened “The Art of Health and Healing,” an exhibition celebrating the relationship between visual art and medicine.
The exhibit, which runs through Dec. 30, is sponsored by Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital as part of its Centennial Celebration and features the work of nine Albany physicians and an original drawing by Norman Rockwell.
An exhibition in the museum’s Willson Auditorium includes paintings, photographs, sculptures and craftwork created by physicians including Christopher Stanich, Burgess Mauldin, Charles Gillespie, E.E. Flournoy, Devell Young, Wayne Holley, Jefferson Davis, Joyce Shoemaker and Mark Shoemaker.
“We really had a good response (from the physicians) when we put out the request,” AMA Executive Director Nick Nelson said. “We are delighted by the pieces we have received and are happy to have them displayed.”
Nelson pointed out that there is a long and storied tradition of artists creating art related to health and healing.
“The connection really came about during The Renaissance when artists line Leonardo DaVinci and Rembrandt created pieces of art related to medical anatomy,” said Nelson.
Lacy Lee, Phoebe’s Volunteer Services director and a member of the hospital’s celebration committee, said the group jumped on the connection between art and medicine.
“Our goal was to come up with ways to involve more agencies and groups within the community in the celebration, and the Albany Museum of Art is a perfect fit in the regard,” Lee said. “We hope our sponsorship of ‘The Art of Health and Healing’ has resulted in an exhibit that people in the community will be drawn to see.”
The exhibition is a coming-out party of sorts for Stanich, who works in metal and has three pieces on display.
“Being asked to display is a humbling experience,” Stanich, the medical partner of Dr. Glenn Dowling, said. “Glenn has been encouraging me to display my work. I’m been working with one-eighth and quarter-inch flat metal and rod and bar stock. I’ve always been interested in metal. When I was a young boy one of our neighbors was a welder, and he taught me a lot.”
The exhibition also features works from museums and collections from around the country and region, including the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Mass., The High Museum in Atlanta, The Telfair Museum in Savannah, the Columbus Museum in Columbus and the Medical Illustration Graduate Program at Georgia Health Sciences University in Augusta.
Gillespie, no stranger to exhibits that include his photography, was pleased with what he’d seen.
“I am proud of this exhibition,” Gillespie said. “We have a lot of talented physicians in Albany. I just wish more were participating. I know several who could have contributed.”