Wellcome Collection

Wellcome Collection The free museum and library that aims to challenge how we all think and feel about health by connecting science, medicine, life and art.
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Operating as usual

Living without health insurance in the United States, poet Anne Boyer learned to ignore the unmistakable signs of seriou...
11/06/2021
We who can’t believe

Living without health insurance in the United States, poet Anne Boyer learned to ignore the unmistakable signs of serious illness because she couldn’t afford time not working. Later in life, though, cancer couldn’t be denied.

Part of #Hypochondria

Unless she falls to the floor unconscious, Anne Boyer has always ignored signs of illness. Cancer, however, made her face her fallibility.

Do you know where you're going?
11/06/2021

Do you know where you're going?

Do you know where you're going?

In 2014 Johanna Hedva started writing about bodies – how they behave, and what they feel and need. Hearing the stories o...
10/06/2021
Notes on need

In 2014 Johanna Hedva started writing about bodies – how they behave, and what they feel and need. Hearing the stories of other people’s bodies, Hedva realised that some bodies – those that are ill or disabled – need more than others, but are told they demand too much.

Part of #hypochondria

Writing about bodies, and hearing the stories of others’ bodies, Johanna Hedva also heard, over and over, how people blame themselves – and are encouraged to do this – for illness and disability.

Reading Jacques Derrida in lockdown, writer Brian Dillon has been able to imagine both the author’s now impossible-seemi...
10/06/2021
Writing in remission

Reading Jacques Derrida in lockdown, writer Brian Dillon has been able to imagine both the author’s now impossible-seeming travels, but also his unending worries about his health. Strangely, marooned by Covid-19 restrictions, Dillon’s own hypochondria goes into remission, leading to a blossoming creativity.

Part of #Hypochondria

https://wellcomecollection.org/articles/YLePLhAAACQAdJmf

Reading the writings of the lifelong hypochondriac Jacques Derrida during lockdown, Brian Dillon realises his own health anxiety has become unusually subdued.

Chemist Humphry Davy saw the experience of pain as a question of “mind over matter”. But his friend Samuel Taylor Coleri...
09/06/2021
Coleridge’s hypochondria

Chemist Humphry Davy saw the experience of pain as a question of “mind over matter”. But his friend Samuel Taylor Coleridge was intently tuned in to his own pain and the suppression of it with narcotics. Despite his no-nonsense views, Davy acknowledged that Coleridge’s introspective obsession with his body was part of his creative genius – one which put him ahead of the medical sensibilities of his day.

Part of #hypochondria

An intense focus on his own bodily sensations led poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge to self-medicate with narcotics. But this fascination also put Coleridge ahead of the medical sensibilities of his day.

As she worked on her PhD thesis, Daisy Lafarge began to experience serious abdominal pain. All around her, humans were a...
09/06/2021
On contagion

As she worked on her PhD thesis, Daisy Lafarge began to experience serious abdominal pain. All around her, humans were afraid of catching COVID-19, but could her body have been invaded by the river-dwelling parasite she was studying?

Part of #Hypochondria

Reading descriptions of the way humans become infested by parasitic flatworms, Daisy Lafarge experienced painful physical symptoms. Perhaps the very creature she was studying had invaded her body.

In the past, hypochondria was a fashionable sign of genius and breeding, but soon became so common that the spreading pa...
09/06/2021
Between sickness and health

In the past, hypochondria was a fashionable sign of genius and breeding, but soon became so common that the spreading pastime of reading was blamed as its cause. Today the ubiquity of health information online has the potential to make us all hypochondriacs. Will Rees explores what divides reasonable self-scrutiny from diagnosable illness anxiety disorder.

Part of #Hypochondria

In early 2020, the subject Will Rees was studying – imaginary illnesses – took on a new relevance as everyone anxiously scanned themselves for Covid symptoms each day. But this kind of self-scrutiny is nothing new, as he reveals.

Dark clouds 🌧
04/06/2021

Dark clouds 🌧

Dark clouds 🌧

Covid-19 stopped live performance art in its tracks more than a year ago. But the camera has continued to mediate betwee...
03/06/2021
Performance art, frozen in time

Covid-19 stopped live performance art in its tracks more than a year ago. But the camera has continued to mediate between the audience and the artist, revealing processes, and allowing us access to challenging and thought-provoking work. Elissavet Ntoulia explores powerful performance art in still form.

For over a year, live performance art with an audience present has been largely impossible. But still images continue to allow artists in this sphere to inspire audiences at home.

'Un Encuentro Vegetal' at La Casa Encendida in Madrid is now open! The exhibition, curated by Wellcome Collection curato...
02/06/2021
Un encuentro vegetal - La Revolución de las Emociones

'Un Encuentro Vegetal' at La Casa Encendida in Madrid is now open! The exhibition, curated by Wellcome Collection curator Barbara Rodríguez Muñoz, marks the first chapter of our exploration of the vital yet fragile entanglements between human and planetary health, culminating in the exhibition 'Rooted Beings' in 2022.

Un encuentro vegetal. Patricia Domínguez, Ingela Ihrman y Eduardo Navarro reflexionan en torno a nuestra relación con el mundo vegetal.

When her young daughter declared she’d rather be blonde, a red flag went up for Dr Pragya Agarwal. Here the behavioural ...
02/06/2021
How to talk to kids about race

When her young daughter declared she’d rather be blonde, a red flag went up for Dr Pragya Agarwal. Here the behavioural scientist discusses childhood development, race and representation.

When her daughter decided blonde was best, a red flag went up for Pragya Agarwal. In this essay, the behavioural scientist discusses childhood development, race and representation.

The babies affected by thalidomide in the early 1960s have grown up. With a wealth of experience behind them, they refle...
28/05/2021
Thalidomide survivors in the 21st century

The babies affected by thalidomide in the early 1960s have grown up. With a wealth of experience behind them, they reflect on the value of humour, becoming parents, and the legacy of the thalidomide scandal.

Part 6 of #VoicesofThalidomide

As thalidomide survivors enter their 60s, they look back on their lives and the legacy of the thalidomide catastrophe.

You're never too small to make a big difference.A series by Weewaaz exploring the importance of togetherness, community,...
28/05/2021

You're never too small to make a big difference.

A series by Weewaaz exploring the importance of togetherness, community, mental health and individuality.

You're never too small to make a big difference.

A series by Weewaaz exploring the importance of togetherness, community, mental health and individuality.

Take part in @UpdatingHappiness a device that playfully draws attention to small daily pleasures, by poetic data designe...
27/05/2021

Take part in @UpdatingHappiness a device that playfully draws attention to small daily pleasures, by poetic data designer Stefanie Posavec. Answer the questions and receive a quote which will be added to the archive of individual reflections on happiness. https://www.updatinghappiness.com

Take part in @UpdatingHappiness a device that playfully draws attention to small daily pleasures, by poetic data designer Stefanie Posavec. Answer the questions and receive a quote which will be added to the archive of individual reflections on happiness. https://www.updatinghappiness.com

In ‘Resistance’, bestselling author Val Mcdermid and illustrator Kathryn Briggs join forces to tell the fictional tale o...
26/05/2021
Chasing down a mystery illness

In ‘Resistance’, bestselling author Val Mcdermid and illustrator Kathryn Briggs join forces to tell the fictional tale of a frightening mystery illness.

Read an extract from this new graphic novel now.

In an extract from their graphic novel about a deadly, drug-resistant illness, Val McDermid and Kathryn Briggs explore why knowledge isn’t always the same as power.

It's ok not to be ok.© Weewaaz for Wellcome Collection
21/05/2021

It's ok not to be ok.

© Weewaaz for Wellcome Collection

It's ok not to be ok.

© Weewaaz for Wellcome Collection

With pharmaceutical companies reluctant to admit responsibility and the government slow to offer support to thalidomide ...
21/05/2021
Families fighting for justice

With pharmaceutical companies reluctant to admit responsibility and the government slow to offer support to thalidomide survivors, their frustrated families had no option but to take on the pharmaceutical industry themselves in a decades-long battle to win fair compensation and justice.

Part 5 of #VoicesofThalidomide

In 1962 a group of parents whose children had been affected by thalidomide began a decades-long battle in the law courts, the media and Parliament in order to win fair justice for all thalidomide survivors.

20/05/2021

Artist Sop explores alternative strategies for self-care during the Covid-19 pandemic through a series of meditative sound works.

As someone in the “clinically extremely vulnerable” category, Sop was forced to shield during the pandemic. They narrate the process of building a secret den in a cemetery at the edges of a wood near where they live. The den provides a space for respite, deeply connected to nature: a structure of protection and safety in which to take shelter.

The Den by Sop is now open. Book your FREE timed-entry ticket at: https://wellcomecollection.org/covid-book-your-ticket

In March 2020 two flatmates started keeping a journal of their lockdown experiences. This mushroomed into a grassroots p...
20/05/2021
Collecting pandemic stories

In March 2020 two flatmates started keeping a journal of their lockdown experiences. This mushroomed into a grassroots project encompassing dozens of writers, from students to s*x workers, all recording their efforts to make sense of our new situation.

Find out how personal notebook jottings from two flatmates became ‘Journals of a Pandemic’, a comprehensive diary-keeping project encompassing dozens of writers from a wide variety of backgrounds.

OPEN TODAY!  ‘Standardized Patient’ is a two-sided video installation by US artist Kerry Tribe that explores how actors ...
18/05/2021
Standardized Patient

OPEN TODAY!
‘Standardized Patient’ is a two-sided video installation by US artist Kerry Tribe that explores how actors performing as patients are used to train medical students.

🏦 Book your FREE timed-entry ticket now:

What makes you feel good? © Weewaaz for Wellcome Collection
14/05/2021

What makes you feel good?

© Weewaaz for Wellcome Collection

What makes you feel good?

© Weewaaz for Wellcome Collection

Like many disabled people growing up in the 1960s and 1970s, thalidomide survivors had to fight for a proper education a...
14/05/2021
Disability, education and prejudice

Like many disabled people growing up in the 1960s and 1970s, thalidomide survivors had to fight for a proper education and were all too often viewed as objects of curiosity, encountering verbal and sometimes physical abuse.

Part 4 of #VoicesofThalidomide

In the 1960s and 1970s, thalidomide survivors had to fight for a proper education. If they weren’t brought up in institutions, they were often viewed as objects of curiosity, encountering verbal and sometimes physical abuse, both at school and in the world beyond.

13/05/2021
Let's Do London

We’re excited to be opening our doors once again along with other museums, galleries and cultural venues – we can’t wait to welcome you back!

Book your free timed-entry ticket and find out about visiting the museum from Tuesday 18 May: https://wellcomecollection.org/covid-welcome-back #LetsDoLondon

Nothing prepared bestselling novelist Emma Jane Unsworth for the onslaught of becoming a mum. Six months after the birth...
12/05/2021
Surviving the storm of postnatal depression

Nothing prepared bestselling novelist Emma Jane Unsworth for the onslaught of becoming a mum. Six months after the birth of her son, she found herself overwhelmed with fury and exhaustion. 'After the Storm' is her candid account of postnatal depression and new motherhood.

Emma Jane Unsworth lays bare the despair of postnatal depression and shares her route to recovery.

Growing up as a thalidomide survivor meant coping with all the usual challenges of childhood and adolescence, while havi...
06/05/2021
Adapting to life as a thalidomide survivor

Growing up as a thalidomide survivor meant coping with all the usual challenges of childhood and adolescence, while having to fit into a world designed for the able-bodied.

Part 3 of #VoicesofThalidomide

Growing up as a thalidomide survivor meant coping with all the usual challenges of childhood and adolescence, while having to fit into a world designed for the able-bodied.

Throughout history, gay men have had to confront the fact that their affections and behaviour could see them ostracised,...
05/05/2021
Gay men in London, from persecution to Pride

Throughout history, gay men have had to confront the fact that their affections and behaviour could see them ostracised, jailed or even executed. Dr Ben Gazur looks at their complex history in London during the last 600 years.

Ben Gazur’s whistle-stop tour of the history of gay men in London takes us from 14th-century persecution to modern Pride events.

What simple pleasures are you looking at anew?Artwork: ©lesleyimgart for Wellcome Collection.
30/04/2021

What simple pleasures are you looking at anew?

Artwork: ©lesleyimgart for Wellcome Collection.

What simple pleasures are you looking at anew?

Artwork: ©lesleyimgart for Wellcome Collection.

In a time without scans or antenatal tests, neither medical staff nor parents were prepared for the damage to the foetus...
30/04/2021
Thalidomide babies

In a time without scans or antenatal tests, neither medical staff nor parents were prepared for the damage to the foetus caused by thalidomide.

Part 2 of #VoicesofThalidomide

In a time without scans or antenatal tests, neither medical staff nor parents were prepared for the damage to the foetus caused by the thalidomide drug.

For Hannah Dines, the pandemic has revealed the extraordinary efforts of an unconventional friend on the vaccination fro...
27/04/2021
Vaccinating a community, saving lives

For Hannah Dines, the pandemic has revealed the extraordinary efforts of an unconventional friend on the vaccination frontline - Doctor Jane Harvey and her pioneering approach to monitoring and maintaining the health of others.

Doctor Jane Harvey always goes the extra mile to care for her patients, and in recent months that’s extended to huge efforts to save lives with her coronavirus vaccination push.

To date, little has been revealed about what happened when LGBTQI people – especially women – encountered the mental hea...
26/04/2021
The shocking ‘treatment’ to make le****ns straight

To date, little has been revealed about what happened when LGBTQI people – especially women – encountered the mental health system 50 years ago. But new research has unearthed hidden, and often shocking stories. #LesbianVisibilityDay

Being a le***an has never been a crime in the UK, but 50 years ago, some psychologists experimented with treatments to try to ‘cure’ women of their orientation. Find out what this involved.

For two women from different cultural backgrounds, even choosing a s***m donor can get complicated. Paula Akpan explores...
26/04/2021
Mixed heritage le***an couples and fertility treatment

For two women from different cultural backgrounds, even choosing a s***m donor can get complicated. Paula Akpan explores the issues around fertility treatment and the limited resources available for le***an couples. #LesbianVisibilityDay

For a le***an couple who want to share their different cultural heritages with their child, fertility treatment can get very complicated.

What changes have you noticed around you?Artwork: ©lesleyimgart for Wellcome Collection.
23/04/2021

What changes have you noticed around you?

Artwork: ©lesleyimgart for Wellcome Collection.

What changes have you noticed around you?

Artwork: ©lesleyimgart for Wellcome Collection.

Over 60 years have passed since thalidomide was first prescribed to pregnant women. Hear from some of the women who took...
23/04/2021
Thalidomide, a bitter pill

Over 60 years have passed since thalidomide was first prescribed to pregnant women. Hear from some of the women who took the drug and their experiences as the full impact of the thalidomide scandal unfolded around them.

Part 1 of #VoicesofThalidomide

Hear from some of the women who took the drug thalidomide over sixty years ago about the fear, isolation and grief that they experienced as the appalling pharmaceutical scandal unfolded around them.

Cystitis is more than just an uncomfortable bladder infection. Sufferers also endure s*xism, shame, and stigma from medi...
21/04/2021
The secret sting of cystitis

Cystitis is more than just an uncomfortable bladder infection. Sufferers also endure s*xism, shame, and stigma from medical professionals. Agnes Arnold-Forster explores how these issues in modern medicine meet through her own experience, and how victims find solace in each other.

Agnes Arnold-Forster recounts her experiences of cystitis, explaining how this illness intersects with s*xism, shame, and stigma from medical professionals.

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WELLCOME COLLECTION

We are a free museum and library, located in central London, that aims to challenge how people think and feel about health.

Through exhibitions, collections, live programming, digital, broadcast and publishing, we create opportunities for people to think deeply about the connections between science, medicine, life and art. All our exhibitions and most of our events are free and open to everyone.

We are part of the Wellcome Trust, which exists to improve health by helping great ideas to thrive. We support researchers, we take on big health challenges, we campaign for better science, and we help everyone get involved with science and health research. We are a politically and financially independent foundation.

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Comments

I visited you on Sunday and thoroughly enjoyed your Medicine Man Exhibition. I also sat in your reading room for a while which was very interesting too. I could have stayed all day. And thank you for letting me take photos! That made a big difference to my visit. I will definitely be visiting again as I wish to explore your library (which was closed on sunday).
We spoke to comedian and activist Mark Thomas about his Lockdown Check-up podcast, produced in partnership with the Wellcome Collection...
Save the tree in Euston Sq. This is happening just in front of your eyes
This was my grandmother's medical diary
Hello all, during Covid19 lockdown, I have adapted my MSc research to online format and would love for you to take part when you have some free time. *** a study into the importance of the body in the aesthetic experience.*** it’s important you do it on computer/laptop not phone, so click on link if/when ready to commit. If you would like to take part, please follow the link to the questionnaire. many thanks for your time and brainbodies, it is much appreciated.
Are you a current or former museum and gallery professional working in the UK or internationally? We are inviting colleagues in the sector to complete a survey that aims to explore the perspectives and experiences of current and former museum and gallery professionals in relation to graduate employability in the sector. Our survey can be accessed at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdekeCXoKtluvSF-r1Y_JXOKTMVaTZ36UB8PKlpjhWyGI3QwQ/viewform (closing date: 18th of June). We would appreciate if you could take the time to complete our survey and circulate it amongst your colleagues. This survey is part of the project Curating Expertise: Towards a Museum Forum @ King’s, with which we aim to build an interdisciplinary Museum Studies teaching and research agenda at King’s College London. We are interested in colleagues’ thoughts about the knowledges, skills and experience that museum studies graduates should possess to be employable in the sector today. We are particularly keen to hear from those interested in contributing, in one form or another, to the delivery of a London-based but globally focused new Museum Studies teaching provision. Whilst we are interested in collaborating with London-based institutions / professionals, we would be delighted to also hear from colleagues across the UK and internationally. Whilst we appreciate this is a time of uncertainty for the sector, it seems a critical moment to reflect on how we can train future generations of resilient museum professionals. If you wish to get in touch, you can reach us at [email protected] and [email protected]. Best wishes, Dr Stuart Dunn (DDH) and Dr Serena Iervolino (CMCI)
My latest painting is a tribute to my NHS Colleagues
dehumanizing 😎😎😎
Wellcome contents in the news...
Just found this site.
I have organised a group 'The Original Rationalist Association in Chennai,India. My name is K.R.Lenin.
Do you have copies of the journal the Indian Rationalist edited by S.Ramanathan from Chennai,India?