painting dis-ease 2012

Monsters(Series of 8)

These eight small watercolours are conceived as a series titled Monsters. In these I attempt to look at how the idea of disease and disability as monstrous is constructed within the representational modes used by modern medicine to depict the body. These watercolours are based partially on some illustrations from the Renaissance text Historia Monstrorum by Ulisse Aldrovandi that catalogues monstrous births alongside different racial types. I wanted to use these particular illustrations since they mark the beginnings of modern medical representation of the body in the west with special emphasis on ‘scientific truth’. I decided to re invent these adding within them tools of modern medicine such as the stethoscope, the scanning eye, the ruler and the spot light, suggesting that the making of a monster lies within the field of representation even today