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Indepth Arts News:

"Call to Artists: Step into Leonardo's Shoes...Draw Human Anatomical Specimens at this 5-day Intensive Workshop"
2002-01-21 until 2002-01-24
University of New South Wales, School of Anatomy
Sydney, NS, AU Australia

The Department of Anatomy at The University of New South Wales (Sydney) is providing a rare opportunity for the public to draw and sketch from anatomical specimens. Only staff and students studying anatomy normally have access to these specimens, which are human body parts that have been professionally dissected; they are the embalmed remains of people who have generously donated their bodies to the University for study.

Personalized teaching is provided for all levels in a non-competitive atmosphere with a limit of 18 participants. The workshops are open to anyone under 100!

The workshops fill a gap in art education. Science and art meet under the guidance of artist Susan Dorothea White and anatomist Dr. Brian Freeman, both experts in their field. Participants step into the shoes of Leonardo da Vinci, to study and draw muscles, tendons, fascia, joints, and bones. By studying what's under the skin, participants improve their skills in rendering the human form and learn to eliminate those arbitrary lines acquired in life drawing classes.

Drawing takes place in a quiet, well-lit Anatomy Laboratory during hourly periods, with four sessions per day. These are interspersed with illustrated talks held in a conference room. Human development, movement and expression are covered, in addition to basic anatomy. The figure in art history is discussed, with reference to the work of different artists from diverse cultures, from Leonardo himself, to Rodin, Alice Neel, and Hokusai (regarded as the Leonardo of the East). Art topics also include drawing techniques, perspective, proportion, and the golden section. Comprehensive course notes with diagrams and drawings are provided.

The workshops are proving popular among professional artists, sculptors, and heads of college art departments. They have also attracted art students and beginners in drawing, as well as a cosmetic surgeon, a landscape architect, a potter, a jeweller, a physicist, and a writer. Participants have come from near and far, from Sydney and country NSW, from interstate, and a jeweller travelled from The Netherlands to attend an intensive 5-day summer workshop held in February 2001.

Susan Dorothea White
Half torso with abducted arm, posterior view.
Pen, 2001, 30 x 42 cm.
copyright of the artist

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