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2021-03-05 11:28:23

Behold!!! The Protong – The Spectacularly Misguided Sculpture Of Stanislaw Szukalski: An Illustrated Lecture And Appreciation By Sculptor And Anatomical Artist Eleanor Crook Monday April 5 2021

Time: 5:30 pm - 7pm Eastern time New York
10.30pm - midnight London time UK

This lecture will take place virtually, via Zoom. Ticket sales will end at 2:30 pm EST the day of the lecture. Attendees may request a video recording AFTER the lecture takes place by emailing proof of purchase to info.morbidanatomy@gmail.com. Video recordings are valid for 30 days after the date of the lecture.

Ticketholders: a link to the conference is sent out at 3 pm EDT on the day of the event to the email used at checkout. Please add info.morbidanatomy@gmail.com to your contacts to ensure that the event link will not go to spam.

PLEASE NOTE: This lecture will be recorded and available for free for our Patreon members at $5/above. Become a Member HERE.

Sometimes the stately evolution of Art is interrupted by an aberrant mutation. Imagine for a moment that in the early 20th century Modernism and Abstraction had not happened, and instead sculpture followed a different course inspired by Aztec and Northern Gothic, that the dominant form of artistic expression became the tortured anatomy of hybrid offspring of YETIS AND HUMANS, that a sculptor uncovered the truth about the origin of language and that immense monuments were raised in honour of cruel and austere political fantasies?

This is no hoax but an introduction to the true story of Sculptor-anthropologist Stanislaw Szukalski, born Poland 1893 died USA 1987, one of the most talented and furiously committed modelers and draughtsmen ever to fill a gallery with their heady creations, who dreamed of prophetic sculptural apocalypse and died in relative poverty and obscurity surrounded by models of unmade monuments. As a young man in Warsaw he had his own museum, he published a 40 volume of Pseudo-Anthropolgy claiming degeneration in evolution caused by interbreeding between the human and the Yeti, and achieved other surprising things which will be revealed as Eleanor shares her admiration of his sculptural uniqueness and her dismay at his political and anthropological aberrations.

“However prejudiced, distasteful and deluded Szukalski’s beliefs and paranoias were, he expressed them in a powerful and masterly visual language which is really unmatched in 20th-century figuration, almost free from the clichés of fantasy art and the predictability of academic modelling. The first time I came across them I recognised their terrifying beauty and ambition, their Nietzschean arrogance and their morbid elegance, and was filled to the teeth with sculptural envy,” says Eleanor Crook. “And I look forward to introducing him to Morbid Anatomy’s audience, in a way Szukalski’s ideal but unknown public, who I feel certain are best able to appreciate him properly.”

Eleanor Crook is a sculptor and wax modeler who works between the UK and several international medical museums. She is an art tutor at a number of the UK's major art schools and an art educator in various European medical museums. She trained in sculpture at Central St Martins and the Royal Academy Schools, working from life and as a medical artist in the dissecting room. She is artist in residence at King’s College’s Gordon Museum of Pathology and the Vrolik Museum Amsterdam. Her work is in the collections of the Science Museum London, Gordon Museum of Pathology Guy's Hospital, the Museum of Pathology at the University of Padua, the Royal Pharmaceutical Society London and the Hunterian Museum Royal College of Surgeons of England. Her specialism is handmade effigies, baroque bronze and eerie lifelike waxes.

Image: Struggle by Stanislaw Szukalski

To Book tickets Click Here

2021-01-13 13:53:41

Memento Mori Sculptures For Sale At Morbid Anatomy Fine Arts

Mors Vincit Omnia (Death Conquers All), 1 of 12: A Sculpted Memento Mori Created for Morbid Anatomy Fine Arts by Eleanor Crook

In the 17th century, no philosopher’s study was complete without a reminder of mortality in the form of a human skull smiling patiently in the face of life’s ambition and striving. This sculpture by Eleanor Crook is an hommage to those timely reminders of the past, the contemplation of which led the owner to value the day more dearly and to hasten with important work, knowing that one’s days are numbered.

This Memento Mori is an anatomically accurate sculpture in handpainted plaster of Paris of a newborn baby skull crowned with a scale model of one of the Crown Jewels of Great Britain, the Prince of Wales Coronet. The piece was inspired by the work of 17th century anatomist Frederik Ruysch and his tableaux, which used real human specimens in sculptural assemblies to encourage contemplation of the brevity of life. It is displayed on a handsewn cushion of purple velvet edged with gold lace, reminiscent of the delicate braids Ruysch employed in his presentations to soften the blow of the macabre and honour with richness the little lives encompassed in his work.

The skull was carefully sculpted from old anatomical engravings and from historic wax anatomical models in the museums where Eleanor works as a medical sculptor. It is offered by Morbid Anatomy in a numbered limited edition of 12, crowned each with a different crown.

For Morbid Anatomy FIne Arts click here

2021-01-05 16:07:40

Happy New Year, A Word From The Studio

It's not the most auspicious start to 2021 as we enter a new full lockdown in the UK but I want to send you my best wishes for a safe and inventive year if you are here visiting my website.

Last year did involve some cancellations of events, exhibitions, workshops and conferences, but it did mark a new departure in online communication and regular studio time for us travelling, teaching, researching, conserving and handmaking artists. Meeting so many new friends as participants in my online classes for Morbid Anatomy was a real pleasure and a ray of hope, we all got time to study things we'd been meaning to get on with for years and Zoom allowed us to meet people we never thought we might.

So for 2021 I will be offering plenty of classes and lectures for those who like my morbid and speculative schtick, with Performing Medicine, Morbid Anatomy , for students of Camberwell Art School, three great collaborators. They sell out quickly and will be announced to the mailing lists of the organisations and here simultaneously. Look out for Drawing in the Anatomical Zoom Room , Archaeology of the Self parts 1 and 2, a lecture on Renaissance Ergotism and art, a lecture on Stanislaw Szukalski and a lecture on the Occult Afterlife of the Eleusinian (and other) Mysteries.

The larger projects I'm working on ( lockdowns permitting) are illustrations for books by Kelley K. Swain and Joanna Ebenstein, some small sculpture for sale at Morbid Anatomy Fine Arts, some new sculpture for the Hunterian Museum when it reopens and a portrait project with the AboutFace group in York University. I have for a while been developing a collage , drawing and sculpture series about the Underworld which you can see some of the drawings for on my Instagram page where you can find me as @eleanorcrooksculpture That series is a slow burnerbut should end in some dark bronze.

Well that should fill the locked in days, and I wish you well with whatever is to come. Thank you for visiting my website and for your interest and support.
Warmest wishes

My Instagram - click here

2020-06-28 12:32:20

Online Classes With Eleanor And Morbid Anatomy

I am running a series of online classes in 2d and 3d art with Morbid Anatomy.

The Archaeology of the Self: A Four Week Arts Course in Creative Exploration with Artist Eleanor Crook, Live on Zoom
from 125.00

The Archaeology of the Self: A Four Week Arts Course in Creative Exploration with Artist Eleanor Crook, Live on Zoom
PLEASE NOTE: SUNDAYS (Not Friday) Sept 20,27,Oct 4, 11.
6-8 pm New York time, (11 pm -1 am London time UK BST, 12 am -2 am pm Brussels time Europe CET)
PLEASE NOTE: All classes will also be recorded and archived for students who cannot make that time

Picture this: Under the surface of our daily life and thoughts lies a labyrinth of treasuries of ideas, images and visions which our culture keeps hidden. If we could only excavate this and explore freely, our creative and emotional lives would expand and flourish. Our subconscious mind is full of surprises, curiosities and forgotten dreams.

This course offers creative techniques, mixed media making, readings, films, prompts and experiences which uncover the self like an archaeological site, in the belief that under the surface our personalities are linked and a group experience of unearthing our hidden imaginations will achieve more than solitary explorations.

Your guides in this underground adventure will be Eleanor Crook, sculptor and longtime friend of Morbid Anatomy, and the spirit of Carl Jung whose theories of the Collective Unconscious, the Instincts and the Archetypes serve as rich and mysterious drivers for artistic and psychological development.

Lectures and homework and art demonstrations will draw on museums and their online collections which offer special access to humanity’s creativity: those energies, superstitions, anxieties and preoccupations that we share with other humans however remote from us in geography or time. We will generate collage, 3d collage, drawing, painting and journaling. Each week we will make (or draw, write, photograph, film an artifact based on a Jungian concept, leading to the final session where we will present a personal collection of the resulting made and found treasures, a self-portrait as a cabinet of curiosities.

The course will be led by Eleanor Crook, sculptor and mixed-media artist whose background in Classics, anatomy, art history and chiefly making, put her in a position to guide others on a personal quest to synthesize the personal with broader human creativity. The course is tailored to the participants and the only necessary qualification is curiosity and the urge to create and express. Imagination and symbolism, surrealism and the more mysterious aspects of generating imagery, are all welcomed!

More classes will be announced soon. Link below!

Class details & booking

2020-03-14 11:43:15

Podcast Debut! Chat From My Workbench About Restoring Antique Wax Models

Eleanor's lectures articles and podcasting will now be published on the Morbid Anatomy Online Journal.....

Dear friends, you probably have picked up that I am not the most organised of art communicators, and that my website is not always kept up to date so I have decided to join forces with Morbid Anatomy's Patreon to disseminate the wax facts, sculpture tips, odd enthusiasms etc.

Morbid Anatomy's Patreon is well worth the bargain paywall. My friends there work endlessly hard to bring you great anatomy, folk art, obscurities and art content with amazing frequency and generosity and I'm adding my stuff too - - as a way of getting it out there, especially as it looks like all conferences and lectures and public events are off the cards for now. Please join and if there's anything you'd like me to cover in a podcast, article or even ( blush) video, let me know somehow.
Here is a podcast about restoring Ziegler models, from the workbench! I have been working on the collection of the new science museum at Ghent University, GUM. Here I discuss models, materials, developing brains and fish glue....
If you already are a subscriber, you'll find more from me in previous weeks and there's more to come. If you're not yet a subscriber, please consider joining up, I think you will be pleased you did!

Link to Morbid Anatomy Online Journal

2020-03-01 19:17:57

POSTPONED Wax Workshops At Ghent Uni Museum 21 & 22 March 2020

Postponed due to Coronavirus situation: new dates to be determinded. Stay safe everyone!
Ghent University has spectacular history of science collections and are about to open a brand spanking new museum GUM Gent University Museum. There are displays anatomical, zoological, botanical, artistical and all you could desire in any @histsci collection. As part of the launch weekend I'll be teaching wax mouldage class each day where I show participants how to model and colour wax to depict pathology and skin effects on a wax half face half skull which they get to take home. Just hang on to the dates 21 and 22 March or drop me a line on the contact button below for more details. More info to follow soon - hope to see you there!

Image: a sneak peek inside the fantastic new space at GUM

Museum opening announcement click here

2020-01-07 14:33:57

Article About The Certosa Monumental Cemetery Of Bologna On Morbid Anatomy Patreon

In October I visited the vast Monumental Cemetery, the “Certosa” of Bologna , Italy. It was one of the most strikingly morbid and deathbound experiences of my travelling life. It made a deep and I confess ghastly impression on me which I decided to try to put it into words (and pictures) for my friends the followers of Morbid Anatomy.The essay is highly subjective and illustrated with numerous views of monuments, statuary, touching memorials, atmospheric decay and all the charms of an ancient necropolis site.

If you follow their (by $5 subscription) Patron you can read it at the link below.It is a few posts down on their list.

I recommend this Patreon to all lovers of history of medicine, of religion, of folk religion, of the strange and macabre - new posts are added very frequently and it satisfies for me and many others an art and curiosity wanderlust. Morbid Anatomy also organise events and workshops all over the world at which I often speak and teach sculpture - we have been close partners in crime for mny years! Look out for us in Amsterdam in May 2020....

Morbid Anatomy Online Journal Patreon

2019-12-09 20:45:17

An Illustrated Lecture With Morbid Anatomy About Santa Medicina

Recently my good friend Joanna Ebenstein, founder of the Morbid Anatomy library, blog, museum and Patreon pages, interviewed me about the new art commission I made for the Science Museum London's new Wellcome Galleries of Medicine. The Morbid Anatomy project and its preoccupations were highly formative on the statue and Joanna and I have often travelled and researched the subjects of religion, faith, medicine and mortality so who better to ask the questions.....

I recommend the Morbid Anatomy Patreon to all who enjoy art about anatomy, medical history, Catholica, folk religions and the uncanny.

Link to the interview on Patreon

2019-12-04 14:42:09

Interview With Front Row About The New Sculpture For The Science Museum

At the recent press launch for the new Wellcome Galleris of Medicine I was interviewed by John Wilson for BBC Radio 4's Front Row.

Floods and art, Medicine: The Wellcome Galleries, Tom Rosenthal
Front Row

With Italy set to declare a state of national emergency in Venice after the Unesco world heritage site was engulfed by a 6ft 'acqua alta', flooding its historic basilica and many other sites of great historic interest, art critic Jonathan Jones discusses the cultural significance of the imminent threat from flood and fire and what is being done to protect the city’s invaluable architectural and artistic heritage. And John Wilson talks to artist Katie Paterson about the metaphorical representation of environmental disasters in art and the responsibility amongst artists in raising awareness of current climatical concerns.

On Saturday the world’s largest galleries devoted to the history of medicine open at the Science Museum in London. Surprisingly, perhaps, there is a lot of art involved in medicine, with imaginatively-designed sculptural devices and equipment. Major new artworks have been commissioned for the new galleries too. John Wilson talks to the artists Marc Quinn, Studio Roso and Eleanor Crook, as well as Sir Ian Blatchford, the Science Museum’s director.

Tom Rosenthal is the musician whose songs are used on the new Radio 4 podcast Tunnel 29, the extraordinary true story of the escape tunnel dug under the Berlin Wall in 1962. Tom performs How This Came To Be live and discusses building a successful pop career outside of the mainstream music industry.

Presenter John Wilson
Producer Jerome Weatherald

Link to the recording

2019-12-02 00:02:29

Unveiled! My New Statue For The Science Museum London - "Santa Medicina"

This month marked the inauguration at the Science Museum London of the new Wellcome Galleries of Medicine of which my new bronze sculpture, Santa Medicina, is a feature. This was one of four Art Commissions for the Galleries by the Science Museum Group. You can find her - an allegorical figure of Medicine sheltering her patient in her ample skirts - in the Faith Hope and Fear gallery at the far side of the exhibit. The Medicine Galleries have been 8 years in the making, as showcase for history of Medicine, contemporary medicine and Henry Wellcome's collection and I am really honoured to have my Santa Medicina presented there to the public.

Press release of the Medicine Galleries

2019-11-10 19:55:26

Soon Unveiling A New Piece At The Wellcome Medicine Galleries, Science Museum London

In a few days' time I get to unveil a commission I've been making for the Science Museum London in the new Wellcome Galleries of Medicine. The galleries open to the public from November 16th 2019.

Link to the new Medicine Galleries announcement

2019-06-11 22:31:26

International Anaplastology Association Conference

I am very excited to be invited to be a keynote speaker at the conference of the IAA in Scottsdale Arizona. (That's prosthetics, facial and otherwise, to those of us in the UK) My techniques relate to the field of anaplastology insofar as they involve realism and material experientation, but in my field they are to the end of art or medical display and are used without a direct clinical application. Looking forward to sharing notes and skill sharing with experts in the field - I expect I shall learn a great deal.

IAA website

2019-05-27 14:10:33

Creativity Course With A Jungian Flavour : The Archaeology Of The Self

Join me for a week in Oxford in museums and at the Ruskin school of art!

Here's the course lowdown.

Running from Monday 12 to Friday 16 August, this intensive five-day mixed-media course will be led by Eleanor Crook, forensic artist, sculptor and mixed-media artist. Eleanor's background in Classics, Philosophy, Art History and Anatomy makes her the ideal teacher to encourage and guide participants on an individual quest to synthesize in their own creative works both the personal and the broader context of cultural history.

Based in the Ruskin School of Art’s studios, participants will explore assemblage (painting-sculpting-drawing-collage) to develop an Archaeology of the Self, drawing inspiration from the unique museums of Oxford.

You will be working at The Museum of Natural History and the Pitt Rivers Museum, the Ashmolean Museum, and the Museum of the History of Science. These historic and curious collections within the University of Oxford offer a treasury of inspiration, wherein an artist can explore and discover a unique personal voice and modus operandi.

The course will excavate the artist / maker / self as a layered history of memories, ideas, learnings, and collected objects. Participants will be taught a working process, and create a body of work like a personal archaeological museum – unique to each person, and universal in its connections with our shared history and cultures. The ideas explored owe a nod to C. G. Jung and hos own personal art practice. You will leave the course with your own collection of your Self, including a personal effigy or totem, and a portfolio of images and objects.

Teaching in assemblage and mixed media will form the basis of this course, but this is primarily a space for experimentation and development, where participants will be generating a personal imagery, under the guidance of Eleanor and guest speakers. It will allow you to open your practice beyond representation, technique and commercial concerns. In particular, the course will emphasize the value of crafted images and artefacts, putting the digital aside for the duration of the five days to reconnect with the power of the handmade.

This course will be especially suitable for artist-practitioners interested in site-responsive work, especially embedded in museums; for students wanting to bring depth to their portfolios; and most of all, for people who want to use art to enrich their personal insight and development.

"Wow!!! Perfect - all of it. Trips to museums, films, group chats, studio free for all. Exceeded expectations." Course participant

"All was fabulously thought-through and delivered. All the talks and lectures were relevant and fed into the creative output." Course participant

More details and booking

2019-05-27 13:55:28

2nd International Congress On Wax Modelling Padua June 2019

I'm getting my gear ready to show anatomical wax modelling techniques and a talk ready abpout my new sculpture which uses some very ancient wax techniques from the bell casting industry. Hope to see you there....

We are looking forward to seeing you at the Second International Congress on Wax Modelling
University of Padua - 7-8 June 2019

Vi aspettiamo al secondo Convegno Internazionale sulla Ceroplastica
Università di Padova - 7-8 giugno 2019

We are looking forward to seeing you at the Second International Congress on Wax Modelling
University of Padua - 7-8 June 2019

Conference Website

2018-09-25 21:42:23

Upcoming Weekend Of Anatomy In Vienna With Morbid Anatomy Oct 13/14

Morbid Anatomy Vienna Anatomy Weekend at the Narrenturm and the Josephinum
Vienna, Austria
October 13 and 14, 2018
All programs will be in English.


For Josephiunum Events:
E-Mail: josephinum@meduniwien.ac.at
Phone: +43 1 40160 26001

For Narrenturm Events:
E-Mail: pas@nhm-wien.ac.at
Phone: +43 1 521 77 606

Please join us this October as we partner with two of the world's most magnificent medical museums--The Josephinum, housing a historical collection of 18th century anatomical wax models crafted by Italy's La Specola workshop, and the pathological-anatomical collection housed in an 18th century former madhouse, the Narrenturm.

Also, please note: this will be one of your last chances to see The Josephinum before it closes down for renovations!

This special weekend will include exclusive front and back stage tours of these incredible historic collections, along with the opportunity to make your own wax moulage and draw 18th century wax models removed from their cases. It will also include illustrated lectures by Eduard Winter of the Narrenturm, conservator Martina Peters of the Josephinum, medical illustrator Marie Dauhiemer, wax artist Eleanor Crook, and Morbid Anatomy's Joanna Ebenstein, all touching on the intersections of art and medicine, death and culture.


Saturday October 13
Tours, lectures and drawing from the specimens workshop at the Josephinum
Tours at the Narrenturm
Sunday October 14
Tours and moulage making workshop at the Narrenturm

Lectures, guided tours, and workshop
Lectures and guided tour: 40 EUR per person
Guided tour (without lectures): 25 EUR per person
Drawing workshop (with original, uncased wax models from the collection): 35 EUR per person (all materials provided)

10:00 am – 12:00 pm – Lectures
12:00 pm – 13:00 pm – Lunch break
13:00 pm – 14:30 pm – Drawing workshop, guided tour
14:30 pm – 15:00 pm – Coffee break (Lesesaal-Josephinum, incl. coffee, cold drinks and snacks)
15:00 pm – 16:30 pm – Drawing workshop, guided tour
17:00 pm – 18:30 pm – guided tour

Eduard Winters of the Narrenturm: The Pathologic-anatomical Collection Vienna Preparations from the Last 222 Years
Martina Peters of the Josephinum: Waxworks at the Josephinum: History and Technology
Marie Dauhiemer of The Vesalius Trust: Bernard Siegfried Albinius, Jan Wandelaar, and the Creation of Homo Perfectus
Wax Anatomical Artist Eleanor Crook: Wax Moulage: Trophies of the Extremes of Human Experience
Morbid Anatomy's Joanna Ebenstein The Anatomical Venus: An Enlightenment-era St. Teresa Ravished by Communion with the Invisible Forces of Science

Guided tours

The guided tours will offer deeper look into the Josephinum’s extensive collection of historical anatomical wax models back and front stage. Attendees will learn about human anatomy with the help of the historic waxworks. They will also see the extensive collection of pathological obstetric wax models learn about the history and origin of the collections and museum.

The tours will also include a visit backstage to the conservation atelier, where you will learn about the challenges of the artefact’s protection and maintenance. We will also see The Josephinum’s unique collection of ophthalmological 19th century wax moulages; crafted by by Johann Hofmayer under supervision of Professor Anton von Rosas, they are not generally on view to the public.


In this workshop, Martina Peters, conservator at the Josephinum, will guide students in drawing wax anatomical models from the collection. Two original 18th century models will be removed from their historic glass cases to allow for a more detailed study. The participants will hereby have the opportunity to explore human anatomy in the classical 18th century manner. All material--including sketch blocks, pencils (HB, 2B and 6B), erasers and sharpeners as well as easels--will be provided.


Open hours at the museum are from 10-13h. We will provide English guided tours every hour, starting at 10am, 11am and 12am. The tour will take you through the study collection of the museum. We will charge the normal (opening hours) fee of 8€ per person. Each tour will last 45 minutes.


Narrenturm4 different tours, 15 participants each, 1 hour each
10 am, 11:30 am, 1 pm, and 2:30 pm
1 tour: 12€ each
3 or 4 tours: 10€ each
Wax moulage making workshop: 50 €

Study collection plus extra rooms (not included in the opening hour tours)
Gynaecology + Electropathology + Veterinary pathologies
Behind the scenes
Wax Moulage Making Workshop with Ceroplast Eleanor Crook 10 am and 1 pm, maximum 12 people
2 classes with 12 participants for each class
50€ all materials included

Let acclaimed sculptor Eleanor Crook guide you in creating your very own wax pathology sculpture. Crook has lent her experience to professionals ranging from forensic law enforcement officers to plastic surgeons, so is well placed to help you make a horrendously lifelike model of leprosy, syphilis, scars, boils or blisters, - any dermatological case. Each participant will end up with a mounted wax face moulage to keep, and will learn wax modelling the details, colouring , hair insertion and the traditional presentation method using a bandage and pins on a board for wall hanging. Materials and tools will be explained and demonstrated, disease processes illustrated, dire pathologies imitated, and the afflicted face of an unfortunate will eventually grace your home.

Eleanor Crook trained in sculpture at Central St Martins and the Royal Academy and makes figures and effigies in wax, carved wood and lifelike media. She has also made a special study of anatomy and has sculpted anatomical and pathological waxworks for the Gordon Museum of Pathology at Guy's Hospital, London's Science Museum, and the Royal College of Surgeons of England and the Vrolik Museum Amsterdam.She exhibits internationally in both fine art and science museum contexts. In the interest of making figures more lifelike than the living, using a generous grant from the Wellcome Trust she developed the incorporation of electronic animatronics systems into the sculptures so that her moribund and macabre creations now can twitch and mutter. She is artist in residence at the Gordon Museum of Pathology, a member of the Medical Artists' Association, runs a course in Anatomy drawing at the Camberwell School of Art and restores historic wax medical collections for a number of institutions.

Top image: 18th century Anatomical Venus; Alexander Ablogin/Josephinum. All others by Joanna Ebenstein.

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