Diplomas Are Boring

Stephen dissertation heart

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I like people that break from the norm.  A long-time Street Anatomy fan and soon-to-be doctor, Stephen Gaeta, recently sent in this image of an anatomical heart made up entirely of the words from his dissertation.  He put tons of effort into studying a particular cardiac arrhythmia, noted below the heart, and instead of hanging fancy diplomas on the wall, he chose to immortalize his time and efforts into a piece of anatomical art.

Well done Stephen!


20 thoughts on “Diplomas Are Boring”

  1. ThePrincessandtheWarrior

    (just noticed that there are actually 4 prints of his in the shop) … to clarify I was talking about the heart, the eye, and the beaker … my favorite pieces out of the work I’ve seen of his (being the prints that are on Society6, the Dipomas are Boring piece shown here, and the “Art of Science” prints for sale here). I like the Society6 set of prints but I don’t love them – the style is great and i really like the simplicity and minimalism of them as well as the touch of humor – but they’re not as deep and layered as the Art of Science pieces – think they’d be great though in a hospital or a doctor’s office (the artwork in both is usually terrifyingly boring and out of place, with a few notable exceptions that are masterful – one example that I’ve seen in person is Keith Haring’s murals at Woodhull Hospital in Brooklyn).

    Speaking of Art in Hospitals – Does anyone know how an artist would go about proposing a piece for a hospital? I have an idea for an installation that uses the concept of the multicolored ribbons that represent certain medical conditions that I think would be a great piece for a Hospital Lobby but I’m really not sure where to start in the process of finding the right place. Any advice would be much appreciated.

    Also, I’m planning on sending in some of my artwork to StreetAnatomy, as soon as I am finished with my website (which is in the works). I can’t wait to hear what you (my favorite blog) think about it.

  2. ThePrincessandtheWarrior

    Really great stuff … I LOVE the 3 prints of his that you’re selling in the Street Anatomy shop. I’m thinking of getting all three of them and hanging them together as a triptych. The use of text from old medical books is absolutely great and close to my own heart 🙂
    I’m an artist as well, working a lot with heart imagery and deconstruction and comparisons of the anatomical heart vs the metaphorical heart … and I also collect old medical books – specifically ones that go into the interconnections of the mind and diseases and ones about women/gynecology/hysteria and the like. Which is also something that I try to work with in my art – the physical manifestations of emotions (such as your heart beating faster when you’re nervous/excited/etc, goosebumps and similar things). I think that modern science has strayed a bit too far away from this interconnectivity between mind and body – whereas before we knew so much about the body, it was one of the major forms of diagnosis and treatment (not that they were always right or even often) … but there is something to say about our mind’s power over our bodies.

    Anyway, I hope to see more work from Stephen – I am even more impressed by his work knowing that he is a doctor as well as an artist … I’m sure that he is an excellent doctor, as being creative is such an undervalued asset in the medical field (as well as many others) in my opinion.

  3. Vanessa thanks so much for the idea. My sister is graduating with a doctorate next week and I hired an artist to make this for me with her dissertation. It’s not as good as yours but I’m very happy with it!


  4. This is awesome! As someone with Brugada Syndrome, I have a special place in my heart (heh) for anyone studying cardiac abnormalities. Great work.

  5. I’d love to buy a print of this for my best friend who has just recently graduated from medical school!

    Any chances of it being available for purchase? 😀

  6. Vicki,

    The rhythm I studied is called “T-wave alternans.” It’s seen on the EKG as beat-to-beat alternations in T-wave amplitude (as you might be able to see in the image), and it’s a harbinger of risk for sudden cardiac death. There’s a pretty good wikipedia article on it, if you’re interested. The trace shown is actually from an explanted guinea pig heart 🙂

  7. Love it! As someone nearing the end of their PhD in Neuroscience, this is an amazing way to visually commemorate all the hard work (and hair pulling!) that inevitably results from grad school… I’d love to know how you did it, as I’d be interested in trying to make one for myself!

  8. This is phenomenal. My sister is getting her PhD soon and I’d love to replicate. Can you give a brief How-To?

    Thanks very much.

  9. This is absolutely fantastic. I wonder if the artist has considered selling this? There’s a site that does similar posters with the text from books and plays that are just wonderful.

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