New Getty Research Portal Virtual Collection: Anatomy and Art

Announcing the Getty Research Portal’s newest Virtual Collection, Anatomy and Art, to accompany the Getty Research Institute exhibition Flesh and Bones: The Art of Anatomy (February 22 – July 10, 2022), organized by guest curator Monique Kornell.

The Virtual Collection brings together 128 records of fully digitized art history texts from 10 Portal contributors. Many of the publications in the collection are incredible visual resources, providing insight into how the understanding of the human body has developed over time as well as a view into the visual language surrounding the practices and methodologies of anatomical studies. One example is the earliest book in the collection, Jacopo Berengario da Carpi’s Isagogae breues, p[er]lucidȩ ac uberrimȩ, in anatomiã humani corporis a cõmuni medicorũ academia usitatã (1523) that includes a woodcut depicting a man in the pose of Michelangelo’s David, holding a noose draped around his body, which is a reference to the practice of procuring the bodies of executed criminals for anatomical study. These details illuminate broader attitudes about mortality and society through the study of the human body.

standing nude male figure holding noose draped around shoulder
“Isagogae breues, p[er]lucidȩ ac uberrimȩ, in anatomiã humani corporis a cõmuni medicorũ academia usitatã. Impressum & nouiter reuissum Bononia: Per Benedictum Hectoris bibliopolam Bononiensem,” Jacopo Berengario da Carpi, 1523. Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles (84-B28214).