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Humanities and the Arts Pathway Celebrates First Graduate Art Show

April 26, 2023
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Mary Mathison
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Katie Franke
Mary Mathison, Dr. Andrea Kalus, Kathryn Franke
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Mary Mathison, Dr. Andrea Kalus, Kathryn Franke
(l-r) Mary Mathison, Dr. Andrea Kalus, Kathryn Franke

The Humanities and the Arts Pathway (HAP)’s inaugural Graduate Art Show is currently on display at UW Medical Center-Montlake Sky Gallery, showcasing capstone projects from the first two graduates of the program. 

The new exhibit features projects by fourth-year medical students Kathryn Franke and Mary Mathison, both of whom will graduate from the UW School of Medicine in May. Earlier this month, HAP hosted a small reception for friends, family, colleagues and mentors to celebrate Kathryn and Mary and officially open the show to the public.

The HAP Graduate Art Show is currently on display at the Sky Gallery through May 22, 2023.

The Sky Gallery is located in the UW Medical Center-Montlake Hospital (1959 NE Pacific St). Proceed to the third-floor information desk located near the entrance to the hospital from Pacific St. Head to the right of the information desk towards admitting registration. Look for signs for the Sky Gallery to the right.

Humanities and the Arts Pathway Graduation and gallery opening on April 6, 2023.

About the Humanities and the Arts Pathway 

Humanities and the Arts Pathway Graduation and gallery opening on April 6, 2023.
Humanities and the Arts Pathway Graduation and gallery opening on April 6, 2023.

The Humanities and the Arts Pathway (HAP) program is a unique educational experience for medical students at the UW School of Medicine to thoughtfully and creatively engage with patient stories and the experience of becoming a physician using specialized modules, clinical experiences, reflection, and creative expression. 

The program was first established in 2020 by Andrea Kalus, MD, Associate Professor in the Division of Dermatology, Co-Director of the UW Rheumatology-Dermatology Clinic at the Roosevelt Medical Center, Director of Phototherapy and current holder of the John E. Olerud Endowed Chair for Dermatology Training.  

2023 HAP Graduates & Capstone Projects

Katie FrankeKathryn Franke, MS4 (she/her)
"Erythema as a sign of inflammation"

University of Washington School of Medicine
Graduating MD 2023, Residency in Dermatology

Project Title: "Erythema as a sign of inflammation"

Project Description: Systemic racism continues to shape how and to whom health care is available. This piece seeks to call attention to persistent health care disparities in dermatology exacerbated by lack of representation of skin of color in dermatologic textbooks and educational resources.

"Erythema as a sign of inflammation" art project
"Erythema as a sign of inflammation"

Tell us about your creative process: The piece is comprised of two encaustic paintings. Encaustic painting involves adding colored pigment, in this case oil paint, to a blend of warmed beeswax and plant wax. The resulting medium is then spread across a hard board using various tools.

What is your project’s connection to medicine?: Erythema, or redness, has long been used by health care providers to determine when skin inflammation is present. However, the appearance of erythema can vary based on skin tone and can include shades of brown, red, pink, maroon, and violet. Analyses of resources used to teach medical students and residents visual diagnosis of various skin pathologies have consistently shown a lack of representation of skin of color.1 This creates a knowledge gap for providers and may delay or prevent diagnosis and treatment of dermatologic disease.

References: 1Narla S, Heath CR, Alexis A, Silverberg JI. Racial disparities in dermatology. Arch Dermatol Res. 2022 Dec 12:1–9. doi: 10.1007/s00403-022-02507-z. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 36508020; PMCID: PMC9743121.

Mary MathisonMary Mathison, MS4 (she/her)
"Exposures"

University of Washington School of Medicine
Graduating MD 2023, Residency in Psychiatry

Project Title: "Exposures"

Project Description: Images captured in the five-state regional campus of University of Washington School of Medicine. Writing based on experiences in patient care settings during medical school clerkships.

"Exposures" art project
"Exposures"

Tell us about your creative process: As providers, we have the privilege to be with patients in some of the most vulnerable moments of their lives. The words patients share teach us so much, if we are listening deeply. I have kept a list of some of the most impactful things patients have expressed with me over these years and draw inspiration from this. I am also a photographer and frequently have my camera with me during clerkship rotations across the region. I find the mindfulness that comes with seeking to frame and capture beauty healing, and centering.

Connections to and impact on medicine?: Considering the words and perspectives of patients helps us be better providers and supporters. Pairing words, and stories with images places these experiences in the context of the world outside of the clinic and hospital walls, encouraging a broad and open perspective on care.

Invitation for audience reflection:

What is your healing place?

What image do you keep in your mind when you think about the question, “What makes life worth living?”

How do you seek, and experience beauty?

References: Further work can be viewed at MaryMathisonPhotography.com

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