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Anatomy For Artists (1)

March 1, 2018 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

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 “The beauty of the human form…does not by any means reside in its superficial covering, but it depends essentially on that of the structures situated beneath” – John Marshall (Professor of Anatomy at the Royal Academy Schools, 1873-1891), Anatomy for Artists, 1883.

In 1883, the Victorian artist Minnie Jane Hardman (née Shubrook) (1862-1952) produced a set of drawings displaying the supposed ‘muscles’ and ‘bones’ hiding beneath the marble ‘skin’ of classical sculpture. As a probationer in the Royal Academy Schools, a set of studies of this kind were a requirement to prove her working knowledge of anatomy.

Today, Minnie’s drawings form part of the Art Collection held at the University of Reading, together with over 60 studies displaying the full range of her practice as student.

Join Art Historian, Dr Naomi Lebens, Curator of Art Collections at the University of Reading, and British sculptor Eleanor Crook, for an informal evening to view a selection of works from the collection and to find out more about the history of anatomy in art education and practice. Dr Lebens will set Minnie’s drawings into the historical context of anatomical education and approaches to the body in the Royal Academy Schools. Eleanor Crook, who has developed a practice in expressionist anatomical wax model-making, will reflect upon the representational strategies Minnie uses in the drawings, and compare Minnie’s anatomical education to her own, which also took place, in part, at the Royal Academy Schools. Eleanor studied at the Schools almost exactly 100 years after Minnie, where she specialized in wax modelling, lost wax bronze casting and other lifelike media. She learned anatomy and Forensic Facial Reconstruction to imbue her figures – more effigy than statue – with a convincing sense of life.

Spaces limited, register at: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/anatomy-for-artists-tickets-42860473831?utm_term=eventurl_text 

Minnie Jane Hardman (1862-1952), Study of Heracles, viewed from behind, graphite, 1883, The University of Reading Art Collection ©Intellectual Property Office, OWLS000124-13


March 1, 2018
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm


Conference Room, St Andrews Hall
London Road (Museum of English Rural Life)
Reading, Berkshire RG15EX United Kingdom
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0118 378 8660