Accepted Speaker Abstracts

Shirin Afra, Freelance restorer at Opificio delle Pietre Dure of Florence
‘The great skeleton by Clemente Susini, from the collection of the Museum of Natural History La Specola of Florence: structural solutions’ The model of a skeleton of a giant person, 210 centimetres tall, realized with bee wax by Clemente Susini and in 1785, is exposed in a great revolving showcase at the Natural History Museum of Florence, La Specola. The model has been realized by casting the original skeleton which, according to the legend, could not be exposed in an erect position because it was affected by osteoporosis. There are several suppositions on the identity of the gigantic person whose skeleton has been used for the realization of this model, all however handed on orally from the people but not proved by any documentation. The sculpture is realized with a metallic support on which the model in wax has been applied. The metallic holder fixes the sculpture to its basement, placed in a showcase with a crank mechanism that allows it to be rotated, so that the skeleton can be appreciated in all of its parts. The main damages are a consequence of intrinsic problems due to the realization technique but also of the location of the sculpture. The metallic holder, in fact, blocks the art work to a rigid structure that has undergone continuous solicitations due to the treading of visitors and the passage of the of public transportations. Given these premises, it is clear that the stability of the sculpture was strongly jeopardized, and the concrete risk of a collapse was certain so that it has been necessary to realize a structural support to prevent new solicitations which could cause further serious damages. This presentation, realized in collaboration with the National Institute of Restoration of Florence, the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, will show the assembly of a new transparent plexiglass support, not invasive and fully respecting the nature of the art work.

Eva Åhrén, PhD, Director, Unit for Medical History and Heritage, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
'Knowing Self and Other: sensational and educational anatomical waxes in Stockholm c. 1900'
Thiodolf Lütze advertised his anatomical wax cabinet and museum using the ancient motto “Know Thyself.” In his establishment, next to Stockholm’s fairground Gröna Lund, the audience was invited to ponder the dire effects of sinful living on the body: a wax model of the unhealthy stomach of a drinker was on display next to rows of diseased male and female genitals. A normal and healthy looking female torso was juxtaposed with a heavily corseted one, where organs were squeezed and displaced. The staging of popular anatomy museums, such as Lütze’s, combined sensation and titillation with a rhetoric of popular education and self-reflection. Wax collections in medical settings had a different focus: knowledge of the other. The more than three hundred surviving moulages from Karolinska Institutet’s teaching clinic for “dermatology and syphilidology” cover a wide range of diseases and conditions including lupus, vitiligo, impetigo and syphilis. The moulages were for the most part bought from Germany (e.g. Fritz Kolbow) and France (Baretta), but some were produced locally. This was mainly a teaching collection, taxonomically arranged and used for reference. But wax models could also function as heuristic devices in the life sciences, and, as Nick Hopwood has shown, as three-dimensional publications of research results. The nineteenth-century practice of making research-based embryonic models in wax continued in Sweden well into the twentieth century. This paper presents and discusses wax models and moulages of normal and pathological anatomy in popular and medical settings in turn-of-the-twentieth-century Stockholm. The life-like representations of body parts in wax in the medical school in many ways resembled those on display by the fairground, but audiences, labels, display cases, viewing situations and architectural settings differed greatly. Both types leaned on medical knowledge claims, but did so using diverging aesthetic, moral, social as well as epistemic frames.

M. Ambrosi1, G. Pieraccini2, M. Galeotti3, C. Corti4, 1 Department of Chemistry Ugo Schiff, University of Florence, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino (Firenze), Italy, 2 Mass Spectrometry Center (CISM), University of Florence, 50139 Firenze, Italy, 3 Opificio delle Pietre Dure, 50121 Firenze, Italy, 4 Museum of Natural History of the University of Florence, Zoology Section ‘‘La Specola’’, 50125 Florence, Italy
'The anatomical wax models of the “La Specola” Museum: analysis of the degradation process' The collection of anatomical waxes stored at the Museum of Natural History, Zoology Section “La Specola” well testifies the excellence reached by the Florentine modelers in the art of ceroplastics. The models represent an outstanding synthesis between scientific accuracy and art gentleness. Some of these delicate masterpieces undergo deterioration and periodically display a white bloom on their surface, which impairs their aesthetical features. The surface crystalline growth is a widespread phenomenon observed on wax artefacts and it has been extensively studied. Although the bloom chemical composition can be easily determined, the underlying formation mechanism is still partly unrevealed. Hydrolysis of wax esters and fat additives, as well as polymorphic transformation of materials have been hypothesized but there are still many questions that remain unsolved. How do chemical and physical processes actually contribute to degradation? How do environmental conditions influence degradation? How does the progressive loss of originally present materials affect the structure of models? Infrared spectroscopy, differential scanning calorimetry, nuclear magnetic resonance and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry were carried out to assess the composition of bloom samples collected from several showcases. As expected for historical waxes, the blooms are mainly constituted by palmitic and stearic acid. Samples of wax with different aging times were also analyzed to investigate the wax decay process. The amount of free fatty acids seems to increase with increasing wax aging. A sample of ancient wax taken from one showcase exhibited the presence of long-chain even-numbered alcohols which may result from hydrolysis of esters. Traces of diglycerides found in efflorescence samples may indicate the presence derivatives of animal origin. Therefore, hydrolysis of both esters and fats seems to be involved in degradation of the models under study. X-ray analysis are undergoing both on historical and artificially aged specimens to investigate structural properties and modifications.

Dr. Lora V. Angelova and Sonja Schwoll, The National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey
'Keep it together – consolidation and storage solutions for wax seals' The Wax Seals project (2014-2016) at The National Archives (TNA) was a collaborative effort between the Collection Care and the Advice and Records Knowledge departments aiming to enhance our understanding of the technical composition of wax seals, and connect this information with historical and sigillographic knowledge. During the project, it was established that there is a need to systematically investigate and evaluate novel methods for consolidation and storage of wax seals at TNA. The primary observed conservation challenges include (1) wax seals which are broken into several pieces which need to be re-adhered, (2) wax seal fragments which have fragile edges needing stabilisation, and (3) delaminating seals which can exhibit either delaminating paint or separating layers of wax in weakened specimens. These problems may, and do, coexist on the same seal. The historical methods of addressing breaks and delamination are no longer in line with current conservation ethics standards. With the detailed understanding of the wax seal material compositions gathered during the Wax Seals project, conservators and scientists at TNA are now in a position to carry out research on appropriate and ethical methods to repair and store wax seals. We will prepare mock-ups to be used in mechanical and chemico-physical studies on a variety of adhesives currently used in the field, as well as new materials which may be able to address specific complications. The selected materials will also be tested on wax seal fragments in our collection, and in case studies. The work will be dovetailed with new ideas into storage and presentation solutions, including the potential use of 3D printing technology. Our talk will present the methods we chose to employ, challenges faced during the research project, and their solutions, as well as our preliminary results.

Emanuele Armocida1,2, Nicolò Nicoli Alidini2, Alessandro Ruggeri2,3, University of Parma1, Società Italiana di Storia della Medicina2, University of Bologna3.
‘Giuseppe Astorri, wax modeler of the Bologna University, and his preparations on musculoskeletal apparatus. New investigations of an ancient heritage’
During XVIII and XIX century the Ceroplastic Anatomical School of Bologna, the first in Europe and founded by Ercole Lelli (1701-1776) in the early eighteenth century, thanks to the work of talented modelers produced a huge amount of preparations of great value both from an artistic than scientific point of view . Among the most distinguished of these modelers was Giuseppe Astorri (1785-1852), that worked in the first half of nineteenth century with the anatomists Francesco Mondini (1786-1844) and Luigi Calori (1807-1896), creating a great number of both anatomical and pathological waxworks. The preparations of Astorri are now mainly exposed in the “Luigi Cattaneo” Anatomical waxes museum”, in Bologna. An important part of these models is dedicated to the musculoskeletal apparatus. The modeler used natural bones as a support on which he reconstructed by wax muscles, tendons and joints. The use of this natural supports was a typical feature of the School of Bologna tradition, whereas the School of Florence used others support structures and the bones were modeled in wax. Natural bone gives better accuracy of anatomical model. In recent years, using new techniques for morphology and structure investigations, i.e. Computerized Tomography (CT), new perspectives were opened in the exploitation of these masterpieces. In particular TC scans allowed new data about the framework on which the wax was moulded, giving a useful guide for the restoration and preservation of the models. The tridimensional reconstruction of these scans also allowed the virtual reproduction and presentation of the samples, encouraging a better diffusion of their knowledge.

Marco Betti, freelance historian at the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Florence.
‘No mere teaching tools: Wax sculpture in Tuscany from the Medici through the early Lorraine dynasties’
The history of Tuscan sculpted wax has, for the most part, yet to be written. In fact, the current state of inquiry includes several important studies on the extraordinary production of wax models of botanical, mycological, and anatomical subjects from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries—all works, however, of an educational or scientific nature—but very little has been done on the waxes made for contemplation or devotion. To date, the only exception is the famous Giulio Gaetano Zumbo, whose art has been studied from every angle, beginning in the 1960s. The oldest examples of wax sculpture, however, are purely artistic: from the Florentine Cinquecento, artist's models (bozzetti) for portraits or monumental sculptures have survived. There are also finished artworks completely made of wax, as is the noted bust of Francesco I de' Medici attributed to the Sienese Pastorino Pastorini. From documentary sources, moreover, we know that even in the fourteenth century wax sculpture was being used as it had been in the classical world, not only as a means for casting bronze, but also for the creation of sculpture, especially portraiture, where due to the particular ductility of the material, the artist could achieve the greatest verisimilitude. Therefore, a study is proposed to focus on works of art in wax made in Tuscany between the sixteenth and the first half of the nineteenth century with a focus on the little known religious sculptures, now dispersed throughout Tuscany, but also important decorative works like those commissioned from Giovanni Antonio Santarelli, who created hundreds of historical and mythological wax reliefs.

​W. Paul Brown, Adjunct Professor, Stanford University School of Medicine.
'Manipulation of the 2-D & 3-D Digital data sets of the waxes of La Specola'
The Division of Clinical Anatomy, Stanford University School of Medicine, has been using a small collection of stereo photographs of the waxes from University of Bologna captured by Stanford anatomist Dr. Robert Chase in 2007. In 2015 we photographed, in stereo, 200 of the waxes from the priceless collection of La Specola, in Florence. The photographs have been integrated into several of the undergraduate and medical school classes at Stanford University. In addition, an iBook of the collection is under construction for visitors use at La Specola Museum. More recently, through a partnership with Anatomage, Inc., several waxes have been 3-D scanned using a technique called Photogrammetry. The scanning technique produces highly accurate, high fidelity renderings of the wax models. The resulting 3-D models can be manipulated and annotated, giving users a more complete and interactive experience than is possible with the delicate wax models or with 2-D photographs. This presentation will illustrate the techniques used to photograph and digitize 2-D images and the photogrammetry techniques used to capture 3-D data sets of anatomical models. It will also be demonstrated how this valuable data has been integrated into anatomy courses.

Sabina Carraro, Conservator-RestorerMuseum of Wax Moulages University and University Hospital Zurich
'Broken, but not lost: Wax Moulage Restoration'
Wax moulages are objects of great historical value, and they require equally great attention when it comes to their conservation and restoration. There are a number of reasons why wax moulages may become damaged. For example, at the Museum of Wax Moulages Zurich waxes are not only on display as historically intriguing specimens, but they are also used as teaching aids. As a consequence, they are exposed to a number of risks which may harm their structure and stability. Abrupt changes in room temperature, for example, may cause fissures in the fragile waxworks and eventually lead to cracks. Until the beginning of this century, there has been very little research into the conservation and restoration of wax moulages. In the 1990s, several dozen moulages from the Zurich collection were destroyed by amateurish attempts at restoration. Today, these moulages are past recovery and of no use to the medical students. In recent years, the Moulage Museum Zurich has been fortunate to do a research project in collaboration with the Berne University of the Arts on the topic of conservation-restoration of wax moulages. Consequently, the Moulage Museum Zurich devotes a lot of time to the preservation of its precious objects, and also functions as a center for advice and practical support for other moulage or wax model collections.

Melissa A. Carroll, PhD, MS, Doctor of Physical Therapy Program; DeSales University, Center Valley, PA 18034.
‘Mercury, Wax and Teaching Lymphatic Anatomy’
Physical therapy students need to understand the role of lymphatic function and dysfunction. As a pedagological approach to teaching lymphatic anatomy, images of the anatomical waxes at La Specola were used during a presentation on upper extremity lymphatic drainage and spread of infection. Historically, research, teaching, and learning of the lymphatic system has been a step behind the knowledge and interpretation of the circulatory system due to the inability to operationally define, structurally describe, and functionally understand the role of the “milk veins”. Modern lymphatic research has attributed its advancement to the 1876 drawings by Marie Philibert Constant Sappey, however it was in 1774 and 1786 the three Williams (Hunter, Hewson and Cruikshank) published and have been credited for advancing functional lymphatic anatomy. Additionally, Paolo Mascagni’s scientific inquiry and 1787 iconography advanced the structural identification of the lymphatic network. Based on the mercury injected dissections of Mascagni, Clemente Susini was commissioned to create life-sized anatomical waxes of the lymphatic system. These wax productions were also modeled after Mascagni’s theory that each lymphatic vessel must enter at least one lymph node. Throughout the anatomical waxes, the widespread dispersal of lymphatic vessels and nodes serve as morphological representations of lymphatic anatomy, providing a visual supplement to didactic instruction on the lymphatic network, circulation and functional anatomy. Current use of cadaveric dissection for anatomical training, does not easily allow visualization of lymphatic structure, unless the donor-cadaver had an antemortem lymphatic pathology. As a visually stimulating and intriguing resource, the anatomical waxes provide an opportunity for cognitive discourse specifically related to learning and understanding lymphatic connectivity and distribution throughout the human body. Using anatomical wax images may greatly benefit physical therapy students because knowledge of lymphatic anatomy can lead to the development of creative lymphedema interventions, and effective application of therapeutic psychomotor skills.

Maria Teresa Chadwick Irarrazaval, MA Art and Science, Central Saint Martins College, University of the Arts, London.
'Recovering haptic sensitiveness through wax'
We have got to the point in history where 1984 is not a science fiction any more. Technology acts like a double edged sword, that on the one hand offers every day solutions, but on the other ends up disconnecting us from our basic instincts. My artworks raise from a sociological-anthropological research, where I expose through diverse media (goldsmith, painting, etching, sculpture, photography), how in an attempt to explain everything through rationality we are rationing or reducing humans to just a rational being. Maybe the only thing that humanity needs to recover is our haptic ability of feeling the world. What makes wax different from plaster, clay, wood, or others; are two things: the plasticity aloud to make changes as much times you wish, and has the precise combination between softness and hardness. Both permit to capture the gesture of your hands in a precise time. Non-other material has such a precision for texture; in lost wax is even possible to get fingerprints. Consequently, wax is the ideal material to invite to recover tactility. The technique I would like to present on the Ceroplastics Conference is the Lost Wax Centrifugal Manual Metal Casting.’ Through a PDF presentation, video and prototype (of cardboards to comply safety and security requirements), would teach this ancient jewellery technique. The steps of it are the following:
1.- Make small mould in wax (it wouldn’t work in big formats).
2.- Design sprue, feeds and air exit.
3.- Put mould with feeding structure inside a cylindrical container.
4.- Fill with Satin Cast Xtreme (type of plaster with quartz.)
5.- Take out feed and air exit metal sticks.
6.- Melt wax in an oven (then you will have the negative of the nano sculpture / jewellery piece)
7.- Put pre-melted metal on the sprue.
8.- Melt metal with an oxi gas torch.
9.- When the metal is liquid, apply manual centrifugal force.
10.- Put mould in water to decrease temperature.
11.- Clean and obtain results.

Pietro Conte, University of Lisbon
'Too true to be good? Phenomenological aesthetics put to the test by ceroplastics'
In his famous History of Portraiture in Wax Julius von Schlosser incautiously predicted that the invention of the camera obscura would rapidly extinguish ‘the last flickering pulse’ of ceroplastics and, more generally, of any form of hyperrealistic art. In the very same years, the father of the phenomenological movement, Edmund Husserl, was insistently referring to wax figures as the typical example of what should not – in principle – be considered artistic. Although the banishment of hyperrealism from the realm of so-called ‘high art’ is deeply rooted in the history of Aesthetics, it has historically proved wrong. The last sixty years have witnessed an ever-growing production and diffusion of hyperrealistic sculptures taking advantage of the ability of particular materials (from traditional wax to the more ‘technological’ silicone, fiberglass, and polyester resin) to allow artists to create images which so closely resemble their models that they can easily be mistaken for the models themselves. In my talk I aim 1) at offering a brief survey of the theoretical reasons why hyperrealistic works have been traditionally regarded as non-artistic, and 2) at focussing on a single example – Maurizio Cattelan’s Three Hanging Kids – so as to prove why hyperrealism could indeed be considered as a genuine form of art, whereas ordinary wax figures à la Madame Tussauds – although being materially indiscernible from their much more appreciated counterparts – could not.

Tannis Davidson, Curator Grant Museum of Zoology, University College London.
‘The Wax Supermodels of the Grant Museum’
The Grant Museum of Zoology at UCL is the last remaining university zoological museum in London. Since its establishment in 1827, its collections have always been used for teaching. This continues to the present day and the Museum welcomes students from across UCL for a wide variety of specimen-based practicals, course work and research projects. The Grant Museum is home to 68,000 specimens including an excellent surviving collection of wax embryological models from makers including Adolf and Friedrich Ziegler, Rudolf Weisker and Paul Loth. Wax models such as these were, by the end of the 19th century, used widely as teaching aids in university biology and zoology departments. It was the golden age of embryological research and wax models were based on the leading research of the day. In 2016, the Museum undertook a project to identify, document and accession all 200+ models in the collection. While Ziegler models have been well documented, it emerged that few resources existed for other less known makers. Through archival and digital research, social media, international collaboration and a UCL Museum Studies MA project, the Grant Museum was able to complete this project. As a result, the wax models can now be interpreted and appreciated in the wider contexts of 19th century scientific discovery, collaborations between scientists and artists and object based-learning.

​Johanna Emmerling, Michael Sticherling, Department of Dermatology University Hospitals Erlangen, German
'Dermatological moulages in Germany – data on two representative collections'
Medical moulages had their dermatological bloom at the turn of the 19th to 20th century when dermatology as a speciality of its own right began to be established. The newly founded university departments soon began to collect moulages at more or less large scale for training of both students and physicians and to document dermatological cases of special or didactic interest. The collections at two university departments located in the north of Germany (Kiel) and south (Erlangen) which have survived until today were catalogued and their history explored. The Kiel collection comprised around 1000 objects at its prime time 1906 to 1937, 455 of which remain today. It was established by then chairman Victor Klingmüller who was educated in Breslau by Neisser and who must have been in contact to Breslau based renown mouleur Alfons Kröner. 354 of his moulages are still present in today’s collection which is accessible in the lecture theatre of Kiel dermatology. Apart from other external mouleurs, three local artisans have contributed to the collection. In contrast, the Erlangen collection today does only comprise 147 objects, most of them of Munich based artist Hugo Emanuel Becher (1871-1942)). Apparently, moulages were not produced locally. The collection was moved recently from the original hospital campus to new premises where it is accessible to visitors and involved in students’ education. Thus, apart from their historical value, moulages still contribute to academic life as well as information - quite in contrast to their original intention – of lay people.

Maria Carla Garbarino(1); Valentina Cani (1,2); Lidia Falomo Bernarduzzi (1,3), Paolo Mazzarello (1,2). 1. University History Museum, University of Pavia, 2. Department of Brain and Behavioural Sciences, University of Pavia, 3. Department Department of Physics, University of Pavia
'The Wax Models of the University History Museum: a Composite Heritage Between Past and Present'
The University History Museum, inaugurated in 1936, keeps a rich collection of manuscripts, printed books, scientific instruments, anatomical and natural preparations which bear witness to the history of the University of Pavia, one of the oldest in Italy, founded in 1361. The first specimens of the Medicine and Physics collections date back to the second half of the Eighteenth century and are deeply connected to the institutional reforms undertaken by Maria Teresa of Austria, which allowed the University to become one of most advanced scientific centers in Europe. The Physics section has developed around the instruments of Alessandro Volta’s original laboratory, while the Medicine section inherited the anatomical collections of Antonio Scarpa, originally collected in the same rooms which now host the Museum. During the Twentieth century, the Museum was constantly enriched with working notes, instruments and volumes coming from the laboratories of the University and from the clinics of the San Matteo Hospital, where they had been employed for many years for either research or teaching purposes. The Museum also keeps a number of valuable waxes from different collections related to normal anatomy, pathological anatomy and to botany, and a rare example of death mask. The most antique waxes, crafted by Clemente Susini, came to Pavia from Florence between 1794 and 1795, after being purchased by Scarpa. In recent times, several pathological waxes have been rediscovered and brought to the Museum to be inspected. The museum holds three moulages connected to the Trattato di vaccinazione, written by Luigi Sacco in 1809, and to the first smallpox vaccination campaigns. Similar artefacts appear in other collections, as evidence of their large use for didactic and explanatory purposes thanks to their demonstrative effectiveness. This occurred also for three botanical models of great historical interest, based on the microscopic observations made by the natural scientist Giambattista Amici. The latest acquisitions, in very recent times, were crafted by a young artist during a dedicated workshop involving students from high schools in Pavia. These waxes carry on the legacy of Scarpa as they display a tridimensional replica of the drawings he made in his treatise Sull'aneurisma, first published in Pavia in 1804.

Michael L. Geiges, MD Curator, Museum of Wax Moulages, University and University Hospital Zurich Scientific coworker, Institute of Evolutionary Medicine, University of Zurich Senior physician, Clinic for Dermatology, University Hospital Zurich
'The Museum of Wax Moulages in Zurich'
In 1918, two years after the Dermatology Clinic in Zurich was founded, the first "mouleuse" was employed to fabricate wax moulages used for teaching dermatology to medical students. Wax moulages also functioned to illustrate and discuss new clinical and experimental findings at congresses and in research articles.In the 1960s, color photography and other modern visual technologies threatened to replace the fragile three-dimensional and costly models. By then, the Zurich collection counted over 2000 wax moulages.Owing to an exhibition at the Museum of Medical History in Zurich in 1979, wax moulages regained their status as medical documents of special historical value. The growing interest led to the opening of the Museum of Wax Moulages in 1993. For the first time in history, the collection was open to the public.Special exhibitions illustrated the research done with these unique three-dimensional impressions of the historical patient. The realistic wax reproduction of clinical findings once again became a distinguished teaching object for the medical student. Today, the permanent exhibition represents the three main pillars of the collection: a selection of moulages spotlights the history of dermatology and medicine, a teaching exhibition shows a complete overview of skin diseases for medical students, and two rows of showcases illustrate the history of moulages and pictures in Dermatology. Furthermore, the visitors learn about recent projects on the conservation and restoration of wax moulages.

Massimiliano Ghilardi, National Institute of Roman Studies, Rome
'Antonio Magnani and the invention of corpisanti in ceroplastic'
Even in the flourishing of studies that in recent years have thoroughly analysed the phenomenon of the relics, a typology of them – the corpisanti in ceroplastic –, that by the end of the eighteenth century began to be made in Rome and then spread to almost every corner of Christianity, has not been studied, with the exception of some hints in wider contributions. The use of covering the martyrs’ bones with wax giving human appearance to the skeleton, however, wasn’t an original Roman invention, although it is in Rome that it was perfected, soon reaching a peerless artistic level of pathetism and verisimility. It would seem to be the refinement of a technique already experienced in the Katakombenheiligen sent to Germany: in fact, in the first half of the Eighteenth century, there had been attempts to provide the corpisanti of the Swabian region with a more “alive” appearance, which was achieved by applying a thin layer of wax to the skull creating a scared face and, with the insertion of vitreous pastes in the eyeballs, a fixed stare and an absent look. The oldest example of a skeleton re-assembled in ceroplastic seems to be that of the supposed martyr Felicissima in Rome, sent in October 1772 in Sorano, Tuscany. It was a man from Sorano, Giuseppe Leandri, who asked for the relic: he could count on the help of his friend and compatriot Antonio Magnani, young medical surgeon and manservant of Prince Alessandro Ruspoli at the time. The success of the creation of the martyr’s simulacrum represented a turning point in Magnani’s life: he soon imposed himself as a referent for martyrdom issues, carrying out his activity under the Pontifical Sacristan as «Restorer of Holy Corps of the Pontifical Chapel». His creations, which were not mere relics but also wonderful works of art, aroused the wonder of the faithful who demanded public exposure before the final destination. From his hands and his workshop, in forty years of activity, a large number of corpisanti came out, all identical to each other in their poses, boxes, decorative furnishings and garments; it almost looked like a serial production on an industrial scale. The garments only varied according to the martyrs’ sex: men were made as milites Christi, women as sponsae Christi. Therefore it is possible, for the corpisanti who are certainly attributable for documentation to Magnani, to ascribe to him those simulacra who are typologically identical to the productions he surely performed. In light of a recent case study, it will also be sought to understand the modus operandi of the papal surgeon who, thanks to his medical skills, became a paleopatologist, trying to interpret, obviously deviating and certifying them in a martyral way, the causes of deaths of the deceased whose skeletons he was recomposing.

Nikki Harrison, ​Efstratia Verveniotou, The Natural History Museum
'The Conservation of Insect Wax Models at The Natural History Museum'
Artist and model maker Grace Edwards created a collection of taxonomically accurate wax insect models for the Natural History Museum sometime between 1903-20. That small collection of specimens has been used through the years as a teaching aid and as content for previous exhibits relating to insects and human evolution at the NHM. The refurbishment of the gallery that housed the models allowed them to be officially requisitioned into the Entomological Collection and for the models to be studied and conserved prior to their re display in the Darwin Centre. Each model is delicately and intricately made by the use of mixed media and wax working techniques. A variety of secondary materials have been used to add details such as hairs and wings. The inherent fragile nature of the wax along with years of museum pollution and inappropriate handling and storage has left the models extremely fragile and prone to further fractures. Conservators at the NHM have carried out bespoke conservation treatments for each one of them and used a range of analytical techniques including Fourier- Transform Infrared microscopy and Scanning Electron Microscopy to identify the materials used in the construction of these models. This paper present the various methods of repairing, cleaning and restoring the models employed by the NHM Conservation Centre.

Marieke M.A. Hendriksen, Postdoctoral Researcher Artechne Project | Department of History and Art History | Utrecht University
'Learning how to model the flesh: the transmission of technical knowledge in writing, 1650-1850'
It is generally assumed that wax modelling, like many other artistic skills, is something that can only be truly learned by doing. However, from the early modern period onwards, various recipes and instructions for the making of wax models of human figures were recorded in both manuscript and printed written sources in a number of European languages. Their level of detail, practical usefulness, and authors and audiences were diverse, but there are too many of such sources to simply dismiss them as theoretical writing that did not in any way inform practice. This paper explores recipes and instructions for modelling human figures in wax in Dutch, English, and French in the period between 1650 and 1850, and identifies distinct groups of authors and audiences of such texts. Moreover, I will demonstrate that although authors and audiences varied, knowledge about wax modelling circulated between different realms (such as household, medicine, and commerce) in writing. Finally, I reflect on the changing roles that these texts had in practice.

Rumy Hilloowala, Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy, West Virginia University, HSN, Morgantown, West Virginia, U.S.A.
'Genesis of Florentine Anatomical Waxes / Theory of Irritability and Sensibility'
The anatomy of the Florentine Waxes dates from the time of the discovery of the lost anatomical sketches by Bartolomeo Eustachio (1520-1574), to their publication as Tabulae anatomicae (1714) by Giovanni Maria Lancisi (1654-1720). At the University of Leiden, Herman Boerhavve, (1668-1738) a physiologist was interested in the “Theory of Irritability and Sensibility” – on stimulation the irritated tissue becomes shorter and envisages pain. The “Theory” attracted two physiologists Albrecht von Haller (1708-1777) and a Bolognese Marc Antonio Caldani (1725-1813). An addition to the faculty was Bernard Siegfried Albinus (1697-1770) who taught anatomy initially from Eustachio and later from his own publication “Tabulae Sceleti et musculorum corporis humani” (1747). Caldani was influenced by the works of Albinus and on his return to Bologna, Felice Fontana (1730-1805), initially a physiologist, visited him to collaborate on the “Theory” and was simultaneously influenced by Caldani to the works of Eustachio and Albinus. While in Bologna, Fontana’s exposure to the wax models by Ercole Lelli (1702-1766), Giovanni Manzolini (1700-1755) and his wife Anna Morandi Manzollini (1716-1774) was instrumental in initiating a collection in Florence at the Palazzo Pitti and subsequently to the Museum of Natural History (La Specola). At one time there were three sets of anatomical waxes at La Specola, made in succession, seven sketch models, smaller models and the life-sized models. The seven sketch models made more likely by Giuseppe Ferrini in the early 1770’s were considered redundant after the next two groups. They were offered for sale and bought, in 1925, by the Wellcome Museum of the History of Medicine, now a department of the Science Museum, London. Comparison of the anatomical features of these three sets of models with the works of Eustachio and Albinus, proves the provenance of these models.

Kimberly Johnson, Independent Scholar, St Albert, Canada.
'Wax: From Anatomical Sculpture to Contemporary Art'
She reclines upon a bed of satin, her body elegantly sinuous. Her legs gently rub together. A single string of pearls adorns her graceful, swanlike neck. Her eyes appear to flutter, lips are slightly parted, as if she is inhaling a short gasp of air. Her arms extend out at her side, as if to grasp the satiny sheets beneath her. The organs spilling from her torso appear to be flush with blood; a mass of twisted limbs is tucked within her uterus. As exemplified by his Florentine “Anatomical Venus”, Clemente Susini was a master of sculpting in wax, simultaneously depicting exquisite beauty and fleshy gore. It is often assumed that art should be beautiful, that art is intended to create flawless forms and elevate human consciousness through this engagement with aesthetic perfection. Used as an artistic medium, wax is uniquely positioned to subvert this idea. Wax, from anatomical sculpture to contemporary art, is supremely capable of embodying the manifestation of horror, of physically conjuring the monstrous. One of the main characteristics of wax that allows for this conjuring is its capacity for the manufacturing of lifelikeness in physical form. Appearing as if imbued by a living blood supply allows wax art works to fully inhabit Freud’s concept of the uncanny. Artists working in wax are capable of not only replicating life but also creating deformities, disease and annihilation. Wax holds the potential to illustrate most chillingly, the knife’s edge between the beautiful and the monstrous. Building on the work of Susini’s sculpture and a comparative study of the work of Aganeatha Dyck, Alina Sczapocznikow, Patricia Piccinini, and Berlinde de Bruyckere, I will argue that it is through the metaphoric quality of wax that not only is the human condition laid bare but that of the human capacity for destruction.

Sinthusha Kandiah, Geoffroy PJC Noel, Division of Anatomical Sciences, McGill University, Montreal, QC, H3A 0C7, Canada.
‘3D scanning and printing as a mean to preserve one of Adolf Ziegler collection of human embryology wax models for educational purposes’
The trend in museums is to provide a variety of models of their artefacts that could be 3D printed by their visitors. Through online model repositories, those institutions make the relics more accessible to the public, but also helps draw visitors back to the original pieces. The Division of Anatomical Sciences of McGill University started leveraging also the strengths of 3D printing to share some of its wax models collections. One series of human wax models, made by the German Adolf Ziegler (1820-1889), was acquired by the university when ceroplastic was considered a useful tool to provide three-dimensional realistically coloured models that can be manipulated. As the field of embryology grew in importance during the late 1800s, so did the need for models to show intricate details of embryological morphogenesis. Embryologists such as Wilhelm His collaborated with artists such as Adolf Ziegler to produce wax specimens to teach. Because embryos are so small, the international success of Zeigler models relies on the fact that the artist scaled up the embryos. His original work, which required a great deal of patience and precision, was reproduced up until 1936, with the use of plaster molds. By using 3D scanner and printer, we replicated one of the rare anatomical wax models of Ziegler. This new technique allowed us to scale up and down the models when printed. By depositing our scans of the models on an online database, we were able to provide access to our students who can in turn print them and paint over them to better grasp the complicated spatial detailing. The use of 3D printing historical wax models has a promising outcome in medical education.

Karen Koka, Mayo Clinic W. Bruce Fye Center for the History of Medicine - Rochester, Minnesota, USA
'The Mayo Clinic Wax Models: An Introduction'
The Mayo Clinic is home to a large—and largely unknown—collection of medical wax models. Created by in-house artists from 1925 to 1983, they were used by Mayo physicians to illustrate presentations at medical meetings around the United States and Canada. They depict normal, pathological and traumatic conditions; dermatological diseases, physical anomalies, organs, anatomical structures and parts of the body, pathological specimens, and, quite memorably, farm accident cases. Several sets of models demonstrate the progressive steps in surgical procedures such as an appendectomy or tonsillectomy. Because a number of the models were created from real patients treated at the Mayo Clinic, medical records exist to document their cases. This presentation will offer brief information about the history of the collection, and then highlight models of ring-worm in a 10-year-old child, a surgical series, a farm accident, and The Intriguing Affair of the Diagnostic Museum Model.

Amy L. Ladd, W. Paul Brown DDS, Robert A. Chase MD, Stanford University,
'Italian Anatomical Waxworks – Physical and Virtual Teaching from Yesterday & Tomorrow'
The vivid and anatomically superb wax models from the Susini and Florentine schools of the early 19th century provided opportunities to ponder the wonder of the human body. Lymphatic channels and latticework of peripheral nerves innervating feathered and fanned muscles permitted students of medicine and humanity alike to study exquisite anatomical detail – eliminating the ephemeral nature of cadaveric material and its destructive process. The three-dimensional sculptures – collections of osteology, muscles and nerves, obstetrics, thoracic, and abdominal structures – lend themselves to timeless teaching opportunities. As with all fine art susceptible to age and the elements, retaining and creating teaching value remains a challenge. While serving the US Army in Italy in the 1950s, Dr. Robert Chase (emeritus Stanford University professor of Anatomy and Surgery) visited the Bologna and Florence collections. Smitten with their beauty and their teaching power, he vowed someday to photograph the collections with stereoscopic photography (3-D), to make them accessible for all the world to see. Starting in 2007 an international team of anatomists, surgeons, archivists, and photographers began this project. We have 3-D photographed partial collections of the Susini in Bologna (Figure 1), as well as la Specola collection in Florence (Figure 2). Three-dimensional surface scanning on selected works permit creation of interactive models and overlays that potentially create haptic (touch and feel) interactive virtual models. The work has just begun. We aim to create atlases and teaching modules that appeal to the student of anatomy as well as the collector of art. An international pursuit of enterprise as well as collaborative learning suggest this a worthwhile endeavor. Future collaborations with colleagues in Cagliari and the Josephinum in Vienna are also desired, whose collections differ in scope and topic according to their original commissions. We invite your participation!

Luisa Leonardi(1-2), Matteo Bettuzzi(3), Rosa Brancaccio(3), Lucio Ildebrando Cocco(2), Sandro Ruggeri(2), Cristian Mancini(2), Maria Pia Morigi(3), Elios Sequi(2), (1)University Museum Network (SMA), University of Bologna, Italy. (2)Department of Biomedical Science (DIBINEM), University of Bologna, Italy. (3)Department of Physics Astronomy (DIFA), University of Bologna, Italy.
'ALIVE CEROPLASTICS 4D Representations'
Innovative uses of reliable non-destructive x-ray investigation technologies, applied to anatomical wax models, enabled the discovery of implementation methods used by master ceroplastics in seventeenth and eighteenth century, so making it possible to investigate the construction techniques of artistic works 'interior parts'.- We discovered master ceroplastics used human bones to build the ‘skeleton’ upon which they lay down specially prepared beeswax, moulded at full mass technology, with different colour pigments, so as to represent, in a real and admirable way, tendon structures, muscle and human body tissues. These radiological and tomographic investigation techniques have been combined with the latest generation of computer technologies, so to allow a virtual realization of the artefacts generated by ceroplastics. It has also given them ‘life’ (4D virtual models ‘in motion’ realization). Virtual models, in fact, not only ‘move’, but 'open' to allow viewing of their internal constituent parts and 'dancing' with adequate and contemporary musical accompaniments. - With all these virtual representations of anatomical wax, we don’t want in any way substitute the ceroplastics masters realizations, but constitute an additional tool that allows: (1) to increase the informations on anatomical waxes technical embodiments, aged and current; (2) to admit, for a wider diffusion and access, people to the anatomical waxes vision, even if placed at a considerable distance with respect to the original positioning place; (3) to enable the realization of delocalized exhibitions and events, allowing the viewer, the vision of actual artefacts in the place of the exhibition together with virtual artefacts (moving!), placed in another physical location.

Francesco Loy, Alessandro Riva, Museum of Clemente Susini's anatomical waxes, Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Cagliari, Italy.
‘The Collection of Clemente Susini's anatomical waxes in Cagliari: its historical, scientific, teaching and artistic value’
The project of a collection of wax anatomical models, that could illustrate all parts of the human body, belongs to Felice Fontana, physicist of the Florentine Court, who, around 1770, obtained the support of the Grand Duke Peter Leopold. Their aim was not only to provide teaching aids but also that of instructing ordinary citizens on human anatomy. Fontana hired a large number of anatomists, artisans and wax modelers, among whom the great Clemente Susini. In about 20 years, more than thousand models were produced and exhibited in La Specola museum since its opening in 1775. The collection became famous worldwide and replicas were sold or donated to institutions in Italy and abroad. The collection of Cagliari was ordered by Carlo Felice of Savoy, Viceroy of Sardinia, in 1802 and made, in 1803-1805, by Susini in cooperation with the Sardinian anatomist Francesco Antonio Boi. It consists of 78 models in 23 showcases, each endowed with Susini signature and date. Cagliari’s waxes represents the artistic maturity of Susini, no more under Fontana’s influence. The waxes were produced in order to provide 3D models as accurate as possible and more directed to the professional formation of physician than those made earlier of La Specola.

Violette Mandry, Utrecht University
‘Lifelikeness and Botany: the case of the first botanical models in wax’
Since the 16th century, botanists have commissioned artists to depict two-dimensional lifelike plants through watercolour and coloured prints in order to document some plants’ visible properties, such as their colours, shapes and sizes. In the end of the 18th century, scientists and wax modellers advanced the mimesis process by creating life-size sculptures of plants made of painted beeswax. These objects imitated different species of flowers, reproducing aspects of leaves and petals with a strong verisimilitude. Moreover, they were a way to preserve plants, especially exotic flowers that were difficult to purchase or did not grow in Europe. The main advantage of beeswax is the material’s plasticity, malleability and viscosity, which offered wax modellers numerous possibilities for replicating the shapes of plants in detail. Artists could easily imitate textures and appearances by painting on the dry surface of the object. As a result, wax items were three-dimensional substitutes for the plants themselves, overcoming their natural transient characteristic. They were thus used as tools to conduct research in botany and as models to teach botanical knowledge to the general public. By more closely examining the collection of wax plants produced at the ceroplastics laboratory at the Specola in the 18th and the 19th centuries, this presentation investigates the relevance of the properties and materiality of wax in a context of doing research in sciences and teaching botany. It compares this material with other media, such as oil paintings, that also embrace a similarly mimetic potential, and materials, such as terracotta used for 3D models.

Rebecca Martin, Historian, PhD student in Science and Technology Studies, UCL.
‘Depictions of race in wax; now you see it, now you don’t’
Wax moulages of tropical skin diseases were regularly presented on non-white skin. This is often presented as merely a reflection of the patients from which these moulages were taken. However, these models were designed to be representative, not of the specific patient but of the generic disease. It has been hypothesised that this choice of patients, and as such choice of colouring, was deliberately constructed to present the diseases depicted as “foreign”. This paper will compare the inclusion of race in wax moulage modelling with models of healthy bodies used for anatomical teaching in the same period and beyond. During the course of my research, I have noticed that these healthy, and often more abstracted, models tended to be presented as Caucasian. At this current point in time this appears to be a regular pattern, from which I am able to infer that the healthy body was always presented as white and more regularly presented as male as we move towards the end of the 19th Century. In this paper, I will argue that as the style of full body pedagogical models became more abstract and even less reliant on individual corpses, the exclusion of race from academic anatomical modelling becomes more significant. As these models become more abstract, the bodies they present become less individual and more ideal. By presenting the Caucasian as the ideal body type, anatomical models can be seen to engage with wider 19th Century conversations about the evolution of mankind and the hierarchy of being. As such, this paper will be an exciting exploration of the patterns of

Jenny K. Mathiasson, Clifton Conservation Service, Rotherham.
'Jenny and the Giant Frog: A Conservator’s Thoughts on Coloured Wax'
Museum objects made wholly or partially from wax pose a series of interesting challenges for conservators and much work has already been done on composition and treatment techniques. This paper instead explores the physical properties and characteristics observed during the examination and treatment of an object from the collection of the Whipple Museum of the History of Science in Cambridge: a large anatomical model of a frog previously used as a teaching aid for biology students. The object had deteriorated since its retirement from educational use and required conservation upon acquisition by the museum. A variety of problems associated with the musculature of the frog (made up of a selection of coloured waxes) were highlighted in the initial condition report. No facilities were available to perform analysis in-house and so it was necessary to fall back on observation-based methodology in attempting to understand the material. Treatment was completed using Lascaux 498HV for the musculature with additional Perspex supports to allow display. This paper provides an insight into the way a conservator gains understanding of an object mid-process and the significance of observation to make conservation decisions. It is a glimpse of working with a (to the conservator) new range of materials and how the challenges were overcome to allow stabilisation and display.

Lucy Mebarki, Artist, Luton
'Coloured Flesh Which Quivers: Wax as Conduit for Sensation and Emotion'
This paper looks at Edgar Degas' Little Dancer Aged Fourteen and Medardo Rosso's The Golden Age through the prism of quotes from Joris-Karl Huysmans and Marcel Proust. Wax is employed in both sculptures to great emotive impact. I argue that it is the only material which can do so with such effectiveness. The power of the visual impressions of these works is then used as a starting point for reflections on my own sculptures in wax, and also a poem inspired by family experiences. I explore my artworks from a subjective and sensory point of view, aligning the sculptural process metaphorically with various actions and emotional states. The poem takes its inspiration from Rosso's depiction of motherhood, and links back to Huysmans' quote by way of an intimate reflection on pregnancy and the human body in extremis. Biography: I was born in Malaysia in 1982 and grew up in Southampton. Having lived and worked in London for ten years, I am now based in Luton. I completed an MA in Sculpture at the Royal College of Art in 2010 and attended the Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art in Oxford from 2002-2005. My artwork is influenced by my interests in Baroque ornamentation, human anatomy and my experiences in the sport of Thai boxing. These are incorporated into drawings and sculptures which explore decorative excess, bodily experience and personal narrative.

Cristin Millett, Embedded Faculty Researcher, Arts + Design Research Incubator Professor of Art, Sculpture Director of Graduate Studies School of Visual Arts The Pennsylvania State University
'The Lure of Wax: Transdisciplinary Practices at the Intersection of Art and Medicine'
From visualizing scientific data, to digital fabrication, to infiltrating virtual space, artists are crossing boundaries, utilizing technology and science to discover new ways of making and thinking about the human body. Yet the use of wax as a material by artists and anatomists has persisted through the centuries. This paper will present 21st century artists engaging in transdisciplinary practices at the intersection of art and medicine through the lure of wax. In 1995, my research on medical history led me to the anatomical wax specimens of La Specola in Florence, the Museo di Palazzo Poggi in Bologna, and the Josephinum in Vienna. Reproductions in books cannot compare with the totality of the experience of examining primary sources in situ. For example, while researching the anatomical waxes at La Specola, I was struck by the similarity between this display of human anatomy and the display of food at the local grocery store. That observation inspired my sculpture titled Pot-au-Feu, an anatomical wax model of the female body as stockpot containing a reproductive system constructed of wax fruit floating in a vessel of water. I have since returned to these anatomical wax collections on numerous occasions, inspired to create artwork made out of wax. As an artist who employs translucent wax as a medium because of its ability to capture lifelike visual representations of the human body, I am not alone: Franceso Albano, Robert Gober, Eleanor Crook, Chantal Pollier, John Isaacs, Pascale Pollier, and Katharine Dowson immediately come to mind. With recognition to our foundations in the ceroplastic body, this paper will present my artwork and the artwork of other contemporary practitioners that, through transdisciplinary practices at the intersection of art and medicine, investigate the lure of wax.

Francesca Monza, Department of Medicine and Ageing Sciences, D’Annunzio University of Chieti - Pescara
'The Florentine anatomical wax models in the collection of Antonio Scarpa'
In 1804, the famous surgeon Antonio Scarpa (1752-1832) listed a collection of 350 natural preparations in the catalogue of his Anatomical Museum at the University of Pavia. The preparations were stored liquid or dry, and in addition to these there was a section of artificial preparations composed of six wax models of Florentine origins. All the models are still retained at the University of Pavia, that can boast a small but valuable collection consisting of: two wax statues: a female and a male, showing the lymphatic vessels in the Angiology section, three pieces related to the hearing organ in the Aesthesiology section, and finally a head demonstrating the nerves in the Neurology section. Antonio Scarpa planned the purchase of the anatomical waxes in 1786, during a visit to Florence where he was struck by the precision of the anatomical details reproduced in the Specola waxes. He enthusiastically praised the work of the naturalist Felice Fontana (1730-1805) while his brother Gregory (1735-1803) already had a friendly relationship with him and at the time was professor of mathematics at the University of Pavia. The steps that led to the purchase of the artefacts were slow and complex and lasted from 1787 to 1795. The project included the arrival of other waxes, but the descent in Lombardy of Napoleon's troops in 1796 forcibly stopped the expansion of the collection. The waxes, which would require some restoration, are the result of the art of Felice Fontana and Clemente Susini(1754-1814) as demonstrated by the archival research and stylistic comparison with the waxes of the Specola Museum and the Josephinum.

Richard Neave & Denise Smith, University of Manchester.
‘Teaching Models of Abnormal Infants and some other subjects’
The use of wax models to illustrate human anatomy and pathology have long been superseded by the convenience, speed and accuracy of photography, although at a price, as three dimensional form, and size can seldom be fully understood when viewed as just a flat image. Although "virtual three dimensional imagery" may provide some of the answers today, prior to such technology being readily available and in the absence of an actual specimen a flat image had to suffice. In 1972 I started on a programme of creating wax moulague models of the many different and rare conditions seen in the neonatal pathology mortuary at St Mary's Maternity Hospital in Manchester. Approximately 50 such models were created in the first four years. Subsequently many more were added creating a collection of over 80. The models provided an opportunity for a student to view a wide range of conditions from almost any angle and in relation to the size of their own hands numerous of these models are continue to be used today just as they were 40 years ago. This presentation will explore some of the methods, materials and techniques that were developed and subsequently refined to be used in a wide range of work including "Forensic Facial Reconstruction" and the introduction of "Anatomy by Making".

Alejandro Padilla, MS, University of Illinois at Chicago
'Anaplastology: The Art of Facial Prosthetics'
Anaplastology is a branch of medicine dealing with the prosthetic rehabilitation of an absent, disfigured or malformed anatomically critical location of the face or body.” Creating a life-like and anatomically accurate prosthesis requires a high degree of artistic skill as well as an intimate knowledge of human anatomy. In order to accomplish a believable result, an anaplastologist uses classical sculpting methods and materials to recreate the missing anatomy of a patient. The medium of choice is wax, due to its pliability and the ability to achieve an extremely high level of sculpted detail with the material. When creating a prosthesis, the anatomical landmarks are sculpted in wax in order to match the surrounding anatomy and, in the case of ears and orbitals, mirror the intact side. The wax sculpture is created on a stone model of the patient’s anatomy, and is made to blend seamlessly with the skin surrounding the affected area. Meticulous attention to detail is employed to recreate every fold, wrinkle, and pore in the sculpture. A wide variety of dental instruments, carving tools, stamps, and creatively repurposed objects are used to achieve the most realistic textures possible in the wax in order to faithfully mimic the natural anatomy and topology of the skin. Once the sculpture is completed in wax, a multi-part mold is made and the wax is melted away, leaving a negative of the sculpture. Liquid silicone is mixed with pigment to match the skin of the patient exactly, and then painted into the mold. After the silicone has vulcanized, the completed prosthesis is then removed from the mold and attached to the patient via adhesive or implant-retention.

Veronica Papa1, Eugenio Polito1, Mauro Vaccarezza2, Department of Human, Social and Health Sciences, Università degli Studi di Cassino, Cassino, Italy1. School of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, Curtin University, Bentley, Perth, WA2
‘Studying the statues to learn anatomy’
Gross anatomy classes are still regarded as an integral part of human medical education worldwide. Dissection of human body is therefore maintained in most anatomy departments worldwide Nevertheless, anatomical teaching needs to be tailored to the different students that have to acquire anatomic expertise: anatomic dissection is likely beyond the scope of anatomy teaching in some courses such as sports sciences. Achieving of the three-dimensional nature of anatomical structures and their positional relationships from books and two-dimensional imaging is really difficult. We therefore propose a new teaching delivery system aimed to train surface anatomy to sport and fine art students based on surface anatomy evaluation of ancient statues: in July 2013, an important ancient statue from the National Archaeological Museum of Naples moved to Cassino's. during the National University Championships. The statue, found in 1936 in the Roman theatre of Cassino and later part of the National Museum of Naples collection was originally known as “General of Cassino”; and later renamed “Athlete of Cassino” because of its defined athletic physique. It dates back to the middle of the first century BC and belongs to the type of statues depicting an athletic body combined with a face portraiture and thus reflects the aesthetic concept which aimed to give heroic aura to eminent Romans through athletic nudity. These properties render this sculpture adapt to use the moving body of a statue to teach and learn anatomy, especially surface anatomy. According to Lambertini, different sport practice could turn in a preferential, not exclusive and characteristic muscle groups, the so called muscles' hypermorphisms. We studied the muscular groups and the anthropometric features of the athlete statues keeping in mind the latter definition from Lambertini The study of the statue was performed by sport sciences and art and literature undergraduate students under the supervision of the authors.

Kevin Petti, Ph.D., Professor, San Diego Miramar College
'Anatomia Italiana: Connecting Art and Anatomy in Italy.'
Italy’s medieval universities established the study of human anatomy for physicians. To heighten their art, Renaissance masters clandestinely examined anatomy through human dissection. The profound connection between art and anatomy is best demonstrated by the ceroplastic collections of Italy. This presentation describes Anatomia Italiana, an interdisciplinary study-abroad program targeting medical students and anatomy professors, as well as artists and their students, by combining travel to Italy’s oldest universities and their anatomy museums, with visits to the Renaissance art masterpieces of Italy. An emphasis is placed upon the role of anatomical wax sculptures in this curriculum, as students consider them for their didactic, scientific, and artistic value.

Miranda Razo, Independent Craftsman and Educator, Mexico City, Mexico.
Restoration and Conservation of Wax Objects: The Experience of a Mexican Craftsman Introduction
Museums and universities in Mexico often have wax sculpture collections that include, among other objects, anatomical sculptures, portraits, Agnus Dei reliquaries, small devotional sculptures (Baby Jesus, the Virgin, reliquaries, etc.), and dioramas; these pieces may be religious, civil-heroic, or historical – there are many that depict 19th century Mexican historical figures from the era of Independence. Despite this long tradition of waxwork in Mexico, there are very few if any specialists working in wax sculpture. The objectives of this presentation are: to offer a case study of the restoration and creation of civil, religious, and educational objects, a field I have been working in for the past 34 years as a wax craftsman. Materials and methods: In my work, I seek to conserve the traditional use of raw beeswax, which I obtain directly from beekeepers and process manually, allowing me to guarantee the purity of the wax and its suitability for work. Likewise, I respect traditional artisanal techniques, such as the production of molds and models or use of specialized tools that have been used for centuries by anatomists and craftspeople. Certain challenges require the implementation and adaptation of techniques from other disciplines, including sculpture, textile production, wood carving, gilding, painting, and anatomy, among others. Results and conclusions: In the case of restoration, an initial diagnostic test is required to determine the type of intervention needed to conserve the piece. Later, I proceed to clean and restitute missing parts. The objective of this conference is to share my experience and facilitate a conversation between experts, as well as to call attention to these historical objects in order to promote further research and preservation, particularly in Mexico. Additional topics of interest for the conference include: • The relationship between my work and its potential education value, particularly in spreading cultural heritage and producing educational dioramas. • The lack of wax-specialized restorers.

Gabriela Sánchez Reyes, Coordinación Nacional de Monumentos Históricos-INAH. Mexico
'Forgotten Devotional Objects: A Review of Ceroplastic Reliquaries in Mexico. 17th to 19th Centuries'
The presence of devotional objects made of wax, are well known like the ex votos, Agnus Dei, or little images of baby Jesus. However, the wax reliquary that represent the image of a roman catacomb martyr is less known by art historians. This particularly sculpture started to be produced after the discovery of the Roman catacombs in 1578 which stoke up the desire to extract their bones named “holy bodies” or corpi santi. The city of Rome became the center of production and distribution of reliquaries, and in some moment, a new kind of ceroplastic reliquary emerge. The Western Church used these remains as part of the process of Christianization, so the bones were transferred all over Europe and later to America. Even though during the last decade the research of extracted and circulation of bones from roman catacombs had being analyzed, the reliquary created to shelter such delicate relic has been forgotten. Through Mexican territory, there are still several wax reliquaries, which remain in parishes and cathedrals, some of them dated on 17th Century, and some other from the second half of 19th Century. The object of this paper is to present the project’s progress about registration of these peculiar reliquaries, given that there in not a total inventory of them. This research includes historical documentation, essential to find the date, the name of the beneficiary and in general the donation process on the relic. These reliquaries are so different from each other that is possible to find life-size images or small ones as part of a calendar-reliquary.

Nina Sellars, Adjunct Lecturer, Department of Anatomy & Developmental Biology, Monash University, Melbourne, and Artist in Residence, SymbioticA, biological arts laboratory, The University of Western Australia.
'Fat Venus'
This paper explores adipose tissue (aka fat) and its representation, or lack thereof, in the classical anatomical wax figures of the eighteenth-century. Positioning the discussion of these figures in a broader history of anatomy, the paper aims to highlight our apparent investment in the erasure of fat in the pursuit of anatomical knowledge. In following this idea further it becomes apparent that in many ways fat seems to have defined the practice of anatomy by being what anatomy is not. That is to say, traditionally fat is the matter that is to be removed in the practice of revealing anatomy. The question is, can fat be viewed differently and if so what form would it take; in particular would it diverge from the paradigms of classical anatomy that defined the eighteenth-century wax figures? Sellars presents her current artwork Fat Venus, which draws upon the history of anatomical wax museums, to put forward one possible way of viewing adipose tissue anew, and of gaining insight into past representations.

Rebecca Stevenson, Artist, Specialist Technician (Foundry) at University of the Arts London
'Mutable Objects and Anti-Heroics'
In this paper I will describe how I exploit the mutable qualities of wax in my work as a sculptor. I will discuss the relationship between material/process and meaning in my practice. I will consider wax as a gendered material, particularly in relation to bronze and the lost wax process. Wax is a material so explicitly visceral that it not simply mimics flesh: it is transubstantial. The wax votive body part magically cures the diseased part in real life: the wax celebrity offers the chance ‘meet’ your idol. There is a slippage between the real and the desired body, a chance for transcendence, transformation. At the same time, in the Fine Arts, wax has been denigrated as a material. It has been mistrusted, seen as temporary or unreliable, ‘too fleshy’ or ‘too soft’. My work addresses the traditional functions and forms of sculpture, often referencing conventions such as the portrait bust. Sculpture is historically often about the expression of heroism, masculinity or success; presenting in the form of large, discreet objects which the viewer must admire from afar, it uses bronze and stone to convey permanence and immortality; it sets itself against the deliquescence of nature and the body. In my work these values and significations are subverted by a relentless and often perverse desire to destabilise and feminise the sculptural object. Objects are created by casting in multiple layers of wax, then ‘unmade’ via a process of cutting and opening. Wounds or cavities in the sculpture are left raw or embellished with floral decoration. There is a tension between what I can and cannot control in this process, between form and ‘informe’, interior and surface, beauty and ugliness, which the plasticity and fluidity of wax both permits and dictates.

Michael Sticherling, Kay Grönhardt, Marc Saake, Department of Dermatology, University Hospitals Erlangen. Intertek Germany. Department of Radiology, University Hospitals Erlangen
‘The art of moulaging in dermatology – a secretive art?’
The art of preparing medical moulages was mostly kept secret among masters and their students. Only little information on wax mixtures and the detailed procedure of production are available. One of the masters of dermatological moulaging was Alfons Kröner (died in 1937), who was located in Breslau. Surprisingly, he held a patent on his artistry and some of his moulages are signed “DRP” (Deutsches Reichspatent, i.e. German National Patent). The patent is available as a document and presents details of his manufacturing procedure. Applying for a patent may reflect the growing interest in moulages and their almost industrial-like production in major studios of that time (e.g. Dresden, Vienna, Breslau), and also reflect at the same time the effort to keep the property rights with the moulage artist. Regarding the sparse information on wax mixtures and build-up of the wax objects, representative examples of moulages from the Erlangen collection were examined by CT scan and attenuated total reflection, Fourier transformation/infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR). CT scans revealed a two to three-layer composition with different layer thicknesses and densities which may be related to individual masters. A wax sample from an object by Alfons Kröner consisted of carnauba wax with admixed phenolic compounds. Another moulage made by H.E. Becher (1871 - 1942), a Munich based artisan, contained paraffin based waxes with admixtures of stearic acid. These individual parameters may explain the differences in yellowing and bleaching of objects and may help in restoration process of the objects.

Merlin Strangeway, MA Hons, MAET, MAA Student, Medical Art Education Trust student.
‘The Stuff of Self: Modelling & Mapping the Brain’
The reward for the feat of demystifying and untangling the brain, wouldn’t just be a map of the most complex object in the known universe. To model, chart and understand this ‘monstrous, beautiful mess’ would allow us to understand how flashes of electricity add up to our full conscious experience. How a ‘dense canopy of tropical branches’ gives rise to all our senses, intuition, reasoning and memory – the very stuff of self. Joseph Towne’s (1806-1879) stunning anatomical ceroplastics peel back layer upon layer in an attempt to probe, expose and explore what it is that constitutes ‘the self’. Towne was known for embracing new technologies, such as stereoscopic photography to imbue his models with a heightened sense of realism. If he was going to illustrate what lay beneath, he was determined to have it be as close as possible to our ‘real’ subcutaneous selves. In one particular cranial dissection, Towne delicately illustrates the underlying surface of the cerebral cortex with the dura mater still covering the left hemisphere in such a manner as to suggest that the brain is still fresh. It glistens invitingly – almost demanding of us to reach out and touch it, for perhaps by touching it we might better understand ourselves. This paper explores the similarities (and differences) between Towne’s approach to ceroplastics, and that of current medical visualization companies specializing in Neuroimaging. Through a playful comparison of Towne’s 19th century cranial dissections with 21st century 3D printed brains (sold on the commercial market with the tagline ‘hold your brain in your hands!’), both practices are seen in light of the publics’ persistent desire to understand the nature of self and what it means to be human. To model, map and hold is to have ownership over one’s body, and by extension, over one’s sense of self.

Fabio Zampieri & Alberto Zanatta, University of Padua Medical School.
'Ophthalmologic wax models as an educational tool for 18th century vision scientists'
The Medical Faculties of the University of Padua (Italy) and the University of Vienna (Austria) preserved two series of wax models, made by the Austrian Johann Nepomuk Hoffmayr at the beginning of the 19th century. These models were created in a period of evolution of both medical specialties and organ pathology, which brought morbid organs at the centre of medical investigation. Ceroplastic was considered a useful tool for didactic and research, since it provided a three-dimensional realistically-coloured reproduction of organic lesions. The models represent the typical eye diseases of the period, in particular those affecting external parts, which could be investigated without the need for specific instruments devised for the observation of the inner and posterior anatomy of the eye, at that time not yet available. Even if the nosological categories then employed by Hoffmayr were different from those currently used, it has been possible to find a correspondence thanks to the ophthalmological literature of his period. Ceroplastic started to decline at the end of 19th century, substituted by the much less expensive method of preservation of morbid organs in formalin and by new techniques of investigation of the inner body, such as X-ray.​


Stefania Lotti, Curator of the naturalistic collections, Fondazione Scienza e Tecnica of Florence. 'The wax models of the Imperiale e Regio Istituto Tecnico Toscano, now at the Fondazione Scienza e Tecnica: a little-known treasure originating from the historical Officina ceroplastica of Florence.' The Fondazione Scienza e Tecnica of Florence houses a collection of objects of historical and scientific interest, which stems from the cabinets of the I. and R. Istituto Tecnico Toscano, a school founded in Florence, in 1850 by the Grand Duke Leopold II of Lorraine. This school, since its birth and for over a century, represented one of the most outstanding institutions in technical education, and quickly became an important landmark for the scientific and industrial culture in Europe. The school developed and maintained active contacts with many local institutions, among which there was the I. and R. Museum of Physics and Natural History in Florence, whose renowned Officina ceroplastica (wax workshop) supplied the school with a series of human anatomy, comparative anatomy and plant morphology models of high technical and artistic value. Driven mostly by educational purposes, the Institute gradually enriched its collections of natural science with many teaching models, manufactured by the best European workshops. In many cases, the acquisitions were possible, thanks to the close relationships with fellow institutions, as in the case of the Museum of Physics and Natural History. The cooperation with this museum, in particular, was promoted by prof. Pietro Marchi, who was, at the same time, president and head of the natural history collections of the school, and director of the Officina. Starting in 1873, Marchi commissioned the wax modeller Egisto Tortori to make various special models, such as a series of waxed wall panels with natural science subjects, and models describing the development cycles of parasites of vegetal and animal species, that could be very noxious in agronomy, such as Phylloxera vastatrix or Sarcoptes scabiei. Nowadays, the wax collection of the Institute includes, overall, a few tens of models of human anatomy and comparative anatomy, a collection of 66 wall panels, and a mycological collection of more than 250 models, produced in the first half of the nineteenth century by Luigi Calamai, an outstanding personality of the Officina ceroplastica.

Raffaella Santi, Gabriella Nesi, Pathological Anatomy Section, University of Florence, Florence, Italy.
'Weird beauty: Stories and waxes from the antique dermatological collection of the Pathology Museum of the University of Florence'
In the past centuries, the making of wax moulages was an exclusive and soughtafter art that was primarily used for teaching anatomy and pathology. Dermatology has benefitted from wax duplicates, which are not only tridimensional but also offer the “dimension” of colour, an essential element for a correct gross diagnosis. The Pathology Museum, part of the Museum of Natural History of the University of Florence, houses anatomical specimens and more than a hundred waxes of astounding beauty, almost photographic reproductions of the most common diseases in the nineteenth century, when the collection was set up. The original Catalogue of the museum was perused for moulages depicting skin diseases, together with their relevant clinical and/or autopsy findings. The wax collection of the Pathology Museum includes 29 dermatological models such as papulosquamous disorders as well as infectious and neoplastic diseases, the best known among which is the so-called Leper, attributed to Luigi Calamai (1796-1851). The collection of skin moulages of the University of Florence constitutes a precious historical heritage of high scientific and artistic value. Silently but loudly, these models also introduce visitors to the dramatic psychosocial consequences of defacing diseases, still a difficult task for the contemporary physician.


Lucia Corrain1, Giuliano Bettini2, Carlo Sarti3, Sandro Ruggeri5, Cristian Mancini4 and Luisa Leonardi5, 1Museum of “Palazzo Poggi” SMA – DARvipem, 2Museum of Veterinary Pathology “Alessandrini Ercolani” SMA – DIMEVET, 3SMA 4DiBiNem, 5Museum of anatomical waxes “Luigi Cattaneo” SMA – DiBiNem. Annalisa Managlia, Sistema Museale di Ateneo, Alma Mater Studiorum – University of Bologna.
‘Bologna – Redemption wax, Redemption esh. Origin and evolution of the use of wax modeling for the studying and teaching of Anatomy at the University of Bologna’
A group of scholars from the Alma Mater Studiorum will present a video depicting a historical reconstruction of the birth and development of anatomical ceroplastics work in the “felsinea” city. “Perceptions”, as redemption of flesh and resurrection of life, derived from the application of the art of wax modeling to Medicine. This application was inspired by the principle that anatomical dissection is an indispensable learning tool as first stated in 1316 by Mondino de Liuzzi. The first anatomical wax modelings were prepared in 1742, in the scientific laboratories by Ercole Lelli (1702-1766), Giovanni Manzolini (1700-1750) and Anna Morandi (1714-1774).By the end of the eighteenth century, the affirmation of the anatomo-pathological paradigm gave to the study of “diseases” a comparative twist: new diagnosis began to relay on experience acquired during investigations of similar cases made in the past. To achieve this goal, they recorded experiences not only through written words, but also through anatomic modelings. The ductility of the waxes was instrumental to reproduce the various aspects of an illness bridged the gap between life and death since the replication of the visible consequences of an illness made when the patient was still alive allowed scientists to observe and study the damage inflicted by the disease also after the patient had been long dead. This transition from medicine to the art applies also to animal disease, which progressively acquires its own autonomy and is given birth to a very large waxes collection made by leading ceroplastic artists Giuseppe Astorri (1785-1852) and Cesare Bettini (1814-1885) who produced wax reproductions of normal and pathological human anatomy and pathological veterinary anatomy. The large collection of wax models are retained in Museum of “Palazzo Poggi”, in Museum of Anatomical Waxes "Luigi Cattaneo" and in the Museum of Veterinary Pathology "Alessandrini Ercolani", all together part of the University Museum System (SMA).