The ‘gorilla’ by Dr Louis Auzoux. A papier mâché anatomical model in the Spectandum Collection (linked article)

I stopped doing local and regional projects recently. Instead, I now focus on writing articles and longer texts for clients in the world of art and culture. I accept commissions from private and institutional clients.

Writing for a general audience, I make existing knowledge accessible to the average reader. This typically requires some in-depth research, which is part of the fun.

The anatomical model of a female gorilla before restoration (still from a video © Spectandum 2019)

One of the first products of my switch to cultural journalism is an article on the life-size anatomical model of a gorilla. The French firm of Dr Louis Auzoux created this elaborate model. Writing this article was a fascinating journey into the world of post-Enlightenment education in 19th century France.

Celine Poirier, the restorer, carefully disassembles the gorilla (still from a video © Spectandum 2019)

The main innovation of doctor Auzoux was his idea to use separate parts for his model. The professor could take it apart and reassemble it during anatomy lectures. Auzoux created the anatomical model of a life-size man to replace dissections on dead bodies. This made anatomy lectures far less unpleasant and less dangerous for medical students.

The article is also available in French and German.

I am now working on an article on the beaded tribal art of the Cameroon Grasslands region.