Anatomy: Advanced by Printmaking?

Hi there,

Here is a link to a capzle I made: Anatomy: Advanced by Printmaking?

For each of the images, you can click on “show details” to see a larger version and captions, which are referenced in the text sections, plus image attributions. Don’t forget to scroll down in the text windows or else you will miss some content. There are links to a few YouTube videos that are a few minutes long which really help to understand printmaking processes. However, if you are limited in how much time you have to explore media, I suggest that, at the least, you click on the links to the MOMA interactives (in the sections describing printmaking techniques) and the links to the anatomy books to see beautiful illustrations (in the sections describing the anatomists).



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6 Responses to Anatomy: Advanced by Printmaking?

  1. smyers says:


    Great project. I have never used capzles before. It looks great.
    It was interesting to learn about the relationships between the evolving print technologies and the images that were being produced. The intricate possibilities of the woodcuts was awesome.
    I am surprised that Bourgery’s work was not highly regarded. I checked out the link and some of their drawings of the front of the body with organs is highly comparable to ones that appear in medical books today.
    It was interesting that there was an element of artistry/creativity tied to the presentation of the images over time. I guess it was not uncommon for science and art to overlap particularly in the Renaissance era and earlier.
    Very interesting. Thanks for sharing.

    • Danielle Dubien says:

      Thanks, Stephanie!

      To address your surprise about Bourgery, the problem at the time was that surgeons were having to treat war wounds on the spot, often by improvising. In Chapter 4 of Lo’s thesis, (see reference list in the presentation), she shows an illustration of perfectly clean injuries (Fig. 4.1) that one would never encounter in a battlefield. This is Bourgery’s planche 83 Bis of Volume 6, which covers surgical procedures. It’s as though the injuries Bourgery showed would have been the work of a highly skilled surgeon who was at least concerned for the aesthetics of his victim’s injuries. What the surgeons really needed was illustrations of realistic wounds, warts (to put it gently) and all.

      Additionally, Bourgery provided written explanations that were far too short to be useful. To guide surgeons, he relied too heavily on his illustrations, which themselves didn’t show a sufficient amount of steps in the procedures. I read some of the captions and a lot of them are simply descriptive and give very little direction. It seems that Bourgery was lacking communication and teaching skills and assumed too much knowledge on the part of his readers.

      If he had test-run a small bit of his material on surgeons, they would have been able to tell him how to improve his book. However, if you read Lo’s thesis, you’ll discover that Bourgery would have been too arrogant to seek this kind of advice.

  2. smyers says:

    Interesting…not enough blood and gore to be useful…and at the same time, too much relying on images instead of text to be useful. Funny how the world has a way of circling back unto itself.
    Thanks for the explanation Danielle.

  3. Hi Danielle,
    I read your Capzle shortly after you posted it, and throughout the term have thought about the presentation method. I really enjoyed navigating through your project, and wanted to thank you for bringing the presentation medium to my attention!

  4. joypenner says:


    Excellent presentation. I’ve not heard of this tool before. I want to commend you on being willing to break out of the box! I had envisioned something similar to this for my own research project but was just not brave enough to be that innovative.



  5. troos says:

    Great presentation on an interesting subject Danielle.

    Capzle seems to be a great tool to weave text and image into a effective presentation. As your presentation implies, the growth in anatomical and physiological study has much to do with the increased ability to communicate through quality images. In my research assignment, I studied the link between science in general and the development of print. I found that print was a significant issue in helping modern science develop but it also had to go along with a complete shift in thinking. The main quest to gain the knowledge of the ancients needed to shift to a quest to gain new knowledge: from a historical emphasis to a experimental emphasis.


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