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The Lady Anatomist

The Life and Work of Anna Morandi Manzolini

written by Rebecca Messbarger

University of Chicago Press | ISBN 9780226520810

Hardback – 234 pages


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Ana Morandi Manzolini (1714-74), artist and scientist, become one of the most acclaimed anatomical sculptors of the Enlightenment, despite a limited formal education. This story of her life and times documents the intertwined histories of science, gender, and art that complicated her rise to fame in the eighteenth century. Examining the details of Morandi's remarkable life, Rebecca Messbarger traces her intellectual trajectory from provincial artist to internationally renowned anatomical wax modeler for the University of Bologna's famous medical school. Messbarger places Morandi's work within its cultural and historical context, and within the Italian tradition of anatomical studies and design. She uncovers the messages contained within Morandi's wax inscriptions, part complex theories of the body and part poetry. Featuring lavish, full-color reproductions of Morandi's work, this book is a sophisticated biography of a true visionary.

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