Device 251F (Epidural Needles Neckpiece)

Holland Houdek


Rochester, NY, United States

10.25” x 9.25” x 1.75”

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Photo credit: Scott Hamilton

“Instrumental” Series Statement
Surgical tools of the past have long captured public imagination as objects of intrigue and macabre fascination. Whether featured in cabinets of curiosity or medical museums, these devices evoke feelings of enticement and terror regarding their purposes and what these procedures must have felt like on a living body. This series of hand-fabricated medical instruments explores these devices as objects of art. Each piece draws out the tensions between the macabre and menacing versus the whimsical and alluring, as the playful colors contrast and help to alleviate the terrifying possibilities that you are about to die. They both exist in the future by conceptualizing a new type of anatomy and ways to mend the body, while also gesturing to the historical genre of memento mori objects and design.

Holland’s work focuses on medical implants, the body, and embodied experience. She’s exhibited in the Museum of Arts and Design, Fuller Craft Museum, and elsewhere in the US and internationally in Austria, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Mexico, Morocco, Poland, Romania, Russia, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, and Taiwan

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