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The work: Part of an eight-piece project, this piece allowed the artist to display his condition in creative and intriguing angles while incorporating his sense of comedy and irony into the artwork.The artist: Now an undergraduate student at the University of Southern California, Benjamin Brown has had fractures to his fingers and right foot as well as injuries to his pelvis and hamstring. He also has brachydactyly type D, or “stub thumb” disorder.

AAOS Now

Published 2/1/2008
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Carolyn Rogers

eMotion Pictures: The sequel

Art reflects healing, struggles, and independence

The highly successful art show created by orthopaedists and their patients—eMotion Pictures: An Exhibition of Orthopaedics in Art®—is being reprised in honor of the Academy’s 75th Anniversary.

Debuting March 5–9 at the 2008 Annual Meeting in San Francisco, the powerful new exhibit celebrates the caring and compassion that orthopaedic surgeons have for their patients and tells the story of the specialty through the lives of everyday people and the physicians who treat them.

Overwhelming response
Following a March 2006 “call for entries” to artists and orthopaedic surgeons worldwide, nearly 1,200 online submissions poured into the Academy from 17 countries and 45 states.

The AAOS invited artists of any age who had ever experienced an orthopaedic condition to enter the competition and share their stories. Artwork was accepted in a variety of media, but each piece was required to illustrate some aspect of the artist’s feelings about his or her orthopaedic condition, or to represent the history of orthopaedics in some manner.

From orthopaedic surgeons, the Academy sought artwork that communicated some aspect of the surgeon’s feelings about patient-physician partnerships, the art of healing, feelings of frustration or compassion, treatment outcomes, or reasons for becoming an orthopaedist.

The submitted artwork represented a broad spectrum of orthopaedic conditions. A compelling, humorous, or inspiring orthopaedic story accompanied each entry. Orthopaedic surgeons shared stories of frustration over a sometimes less-than-perfect result or spoke of their commitment to their patients. The artists’ words were heartfelt and the artwork powerful.

Juried competition
A jury of highly qualified members of the art community had the difficult task of selecting the artwork for the exhibit. Jury members included René de Guzman, director of visual arts at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco; 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 work: Part of an eight-piece project, this piece allowed the artist to display his condition in creative and intriguing angles while incorporating his sense of comedy and irony into the artwork.The artist: Now an undergraduate student at the University of Southern California, Benjamin Brown has had fractures to his fingers and right foot as well as injuries to his pelvis and hamstring. He also has brachydactyly type D, or “stub thumb” disorder.
The work: “The orthopaedist treats a women’s basketball team in the emergency room.” The uniform numbers are an homage to AAOS; team colors salute the University of Michigan and Northwestern University. The artist: After a long and gratifying career as an orthopaedic surgeon, Booker T. Wright Jr., MD, retired from private practice in 2005 to pursue another of his lifelong interests—painting with oils and watercolors.
As part of the 2008 Annual Meeting social program, dozens of talented eMotion Pictures artists will be participating in an intimate 2-hour gathering on Friday afternoon, March 7. A brief presentation by renowned artist Susan Etcoff Fraerman, wife of orthopaedic surgeon Samuel H. Fraerman, MD, kicks off the session, which begins at 1:30 p.m. at Moscone Center West, Room 2012.

Ultimately, 200 works of art from 152 artists—including well-known guest artists—were chosen for the 2008 exhibit.

Enjoy the show!
Beginning March 5, take a stroll through the eMotion Pictures exhibit in Moscone Center West, and gaze upon artwork ranging in size from a sculpture small enough to hold in your palm to a hand-carved wooden pelvis the size of a small bedroom.

The exhibit has many stories to tell—from patients as young as 4 years old to busy residents and long-retired orthopaedic surgeons. Sometimes humorously, often poignantly, the artwork portrays patient and physician perspectives of orthopaedics in a dazzling array of colors, styles, and media.

The eMotion Pictures project also features an online “museum” and a colorful coffee table book, which highlights one work from each artist in the exhibit. Selected works will also be displayed at the Chicago Cultural Center April 17–July 22, 2008.

Carolyn Rogers is a staff writer for AAOS Now. She can be reached at rogers@aaos.org

Social program offers opportunity to meet the artists

Susan Etcoff Fraerman

Attendees will receive a copy of the colorful eMotion Pictures coffee table book. Following the discussion, the group will move on to the eMotion Pictures exhibition for a chance to speak with the artists themselves about their experiences and their artwork. More than 50 artists will be on hand to speak to participants one-on-one, answer questions, and autograph the book. Light refreshments will also be served.

The event fee, including the coffee table book, is $50. Social Program registration is located onsite at Moscone Center West, Level 2. Registration hours for the “Meet the Artists: eMotion” event are Tues., 2 p.m. – 7 p.m.; Wed., 7 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Thurs., 7 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.; and Fri., beginning at 7:30 a.m.