2008 marks the 75th Anniversary of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS). eMotion Pictures: An Exhibition of Orthopaedics in Art celebrates the caring and compassion orthopaedic surgeons have for their patients and the tremendous impact they have on the quality of life of every patient they see. It celebrates healing, independence, and struggle. Through the art of patients and orthopaedic surgeons you will experience the hard work and joy orthopaedic surgeons and their patients feel when they truly get better together.
In March 2006, a call for entries went out to artists worldwide, asking those who currently have or have ever experienced an orthopaedic condition to submit their work and tell their stories for the Academy's second eMotion Pictures: An Exhibition of Orthopaedics in Art. An orthopaedic condition can be either a disease or condition that affects muscles, bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, or nerves. Arthritis, osteoporosis, scoliosis, spinal cord injury or other spine/back conditions, club foot, amputation, spina bifida, broken bones, and joint replacement are some examples of orthopaedic conditions.
Both adult artists and children were asked to share their art that illustrated-but was not necessarily figurative or representational-some aspect of the artist's feelings toward, or relationship with, their orthopaedic condition, for example; healing, fear, rehabilitation, anger, self-image, mobility, frustration, strength, pain, weakness, movement, body image, hope, wellness, freedom, or independence.
A similar call for entries was issued to orthopaedic surgeons, seeking artwork that illustrated some aspect of the orthopaedic surgeons' feelings about their patient-physician partnership or making a difference in the lives of their patients, why they became orthopaedic surgeons, practicing the art of healing, feelings of frustration or compassion, or outcomes.
The response was overwhelming. Almost 1,200 entries were received from 17 countries and 45 states, representing a broad spectrum of orthopaedic conditions. Orthopaedic surgeons told of their frustrations with a sometimes less-than-perfect result, and spoke of their commitment to their patients. The artists' words were strong and the artwork powerful.
A jury of art professionals had the difficult task of selecting the artwork for the exhibit. The jury included René de Guzman, director of visual arts at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts; John R. Killacky, program officer for arts and culture of The San Francisco Foundation; and Paul Pratchenko, professor of art, painting and drawing, San Francisco State University. The show features 200 works of art from 152 artists.
eMotion Pictures: An Exhibition of Orthopaedics in Art® has many stories to tell, from patients-children, teenagers, adults, baby boomers, and seniors-to orthopaedic surgeons, including residents and retired surgeons. Their artwork-sometimes humorously and sometimes poignantly, sometimes obviously and sometimes subtly-portrays the patient and physician perspectives of orthopaedics in an amazing array of colors, styles, and media.