THE BUSINESS OF THE FLESH
ART, SCIENCE & ACCESS TO THE HUMAN BODY
A CONFERENCE IN OXFORD
10AM Introduction by DR RUTH RICHARDSON
10.15 JANE WILDGOOSE, artist, designer, writer, introduced the artists and talked about her work as a designer and artist. In a paper first given in 2001 at the ICA, she explored objectification and commodification of the human corpse - the effect of context upon perception of content, in its exhibition.
11.30 SARAH SIMBLET, artist, and author of Anatomy for the Artist, [Dorling Kindersley, 2001]. The role of anatomy in Sarahs work, and its continuing relevance to the students she teaches.
11.45 ELEANOR CROOK, sculptor and lecturer. Observation of the dead, and the rendering of life in her work as a sculptor, and in facial/archaeological reconstruction.
12.00 SUE FOX, photographer, work featured in the 1998 Channel 4 series Vile Bodies. "Reverencing the Body" - the emotional impact of photographing post mortems and crematoria.
12.15 CHRISTINE WARRINGTON, artist, and Sister, Intensive Care Nursing.
"Art for Lifes Sake" - exploration of her experience as a nurse working in Intensive Care: her awareness of a sense of isolation and displacement for patients in her care, the subject of work for her MA degree in Printmaking at the Royal College of Art (2002)
12.30 DENISE GREEN, artist, whose childs organs were retained without consent by pathologists at Alder Hey Hospital. Issues of vulnerability of the child, in life and in death, and questioning of the laws that were in place to protect her child after death, explored in her student work at Bolton Institute. Denise was introduced by ALAN BUCKINGHAM, Lecturer in Visual Arts at Bolton Institute. JENNIFER SHAW, Keeper of Arts at Bolton Museum & Art Gallery, outlined future developments for Denises work.
2.00 DR. RUTH RICHARDSON, writer, broadcaster, author of Death, Dissection & the Destitute read her short story Organ Music. Narrated by a museum specimen, Organ Music reflects on the personalities of those individuals whose body parts are now exhibits in a nameless medical museum.
2.25 TERRY MUNYARD, Counsel for the defence for sculptor Anthony-Noel Kelly, prosecuted, and tried for theft, of human anatomical specimens from the Royal College of Surgeons in 1997-98. Legal precedents regarding the ownership of the body - and the historic changes made to them - in the case of Anthony-Noel Kelly.
2.45 DR. TIM MARSHALL, author of Murdering to Dissect. Repercussions of organ retention scandals; comment on contemporary attitudes to death, and the legacy of the 1832 Anatomy Act.
3.00 PROFESSOR SEBASTIAN LUCAS, Dept. of Histopathology, Guys, Kings & St. Thomas School of Medicine, London. Pathology underpins all medicine. Therefore with appropriate consent, its needs are also those of the public. Retention of human tissues and, less commonly, of human organs is important for diagnosis, clinical governance, teaching and research.
3.20 W.G.J. EDWARDS, Keeper - Gordon Museum, Guys, Kings & St. Thomass Medical & Dental Schools, Kings College, London.
"Art of the Medical Museum - Purpose versus Principle" - comparisons of collections, and comparison of response to change by medical museums and artists.
4.00 DR. BRIAN OWEN-SMITH, President of the Hunterian Society.
Discovery of the Hewson Anatomy School. Discovery of a disparate collection of bones in 1997, in the basement of Franklin House - ramifications of the discoveries.
4.15 DR. PAQUITA DE ZULUETA, GP who also teaches medical students. Reflections on the use of the recently dead cadaver as a [medical] teaching tool.
4.35 JOHN PYM. The donation of his fathers body to the College of Anatomy (1993), his feelings about this at the time and subsequent thoughts about why he wished to make the donation.
4.50 PROFESSOR BRIAN HURWITZ, Medicine & the Arts, Kings College, London. Introduction to debate.
The organisers would like to thank Professor Brian Catling at The Ruskin School of Drawing & Fine Art for his support and encouragement of this conference, and for making it happen in Oxford. We are extremely grateful to Michelle Stevenson and Vanda Wilkinson for co-ordinating the project in Oxford, and The School of Geography & the Environment, for being our hosts - particularly Jerry Lee, the Administrator, and Martin Barfoot, the a/v technician.