The 'Nurses in art' Exhibition

A presentation of nurses depicted in art through a span of more than a century and across multiple cultures.  This journey takes us through Europe, Asia and the US. It brings us bedside caring for the sick within homes, and attending the injured and dying in war zones.  We also see that the beauty, grace and intelligence of the nurse is in the eye of the beholder - or in this case the artist - as the viewer witnesses nurses depicted as hard and sinister, as in the case of Wang Xingwei, or exhausted and almost comical as depicted by Lev Kotlyarov, or angelic as the Sister of Charity Serving a Patient presented in an 1848 daguerreotype.  Enjoy!   Curator Lauren Eveland 

A young nurse caring for a hospice patient in 1848. She appears to gently touch the patients shoulder and is holding a basin with the idea of providing comfort to the patient.The artist is unknown. Daguerreotype
This sketch, and the next in this series, simply titled 'Nurse' and probably followed by her surname, shows us older nurses, depicted with angular, hawkish, alert features and sharp hard lines.
Although pleasant looking, she is depicted in rough, hard angular lines. We have the sense of a wizened, hard working,experienced career nurse.
Henry Tonks was a surgeon, as well as an artist and teacher. In this pastel drawing of a WWI soldier in an agonizing surgery, the nurse is prominently assisting the surgical team and patient.
Norah Neilson-Gray is the first female artist in our series. She painted during the day after completing her shifts as an aide during WWI. This is of the female doctor, Francis Ivens, and nurses. Oil
A visiting nurse is captured by artist Laura Gilpin. She is attending a sick mother and is surrounded by the women's children. Photography
Although this art work description is in Cyrillic Russian, we can still appreciate what we are seeing, a Russian nurse in the 1940's - WWII era. She appears straightforward and confident.
A female war artist sent by the Red Cross to record her findings during WWII.This is from a concentration camp showing us "pure horror". Nurses delousing before moving patients to a hospital. Oil
A Russian 1980's oil painting of three exhausted nurses after a shift. Notice the Red Cross bag on the bench beside them. It is both a little comical as well as poignant.
The final two works in this series is by the same artist, Wang. In both depictions of nurses he presents frightening images and harsh symbolic colors: red-blood, grey death mask and yellow - illness.
Credits: All media
This user gallery has been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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