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Ayurvedic Man: Encounters with Indian medicine

Wellcome Collection, London

16 Nov 2017 - 8 Apr 2018

This exhibition takes its title and inspiration from the ‘Ayurvedic Man’ – an 18th-century Nepali painting depicting the organs and vessels of the male body according to classical Ayurveda. Showcasing an exquisite range of material, including Sanskrit, Persian and Tibetan manuscripts, vibrant gouache paintings, erotic manuals and surgical tools from our collections, the exhibition includes a new commission by artist Ranjit Kandalgaonkar reimagining the Bombay plague epidemic of 1896 and a new film by Nilanjan Bhattacharya centred around contemporary medicinal practitioners from India. Ayurveda has been associated for thousands of years with a range of medical practices rooted in South Asia. Widely practised today in India and beyond, it has been transformed during exchanges with biomedicine and the global market of wellness. Find out more about the ‘Ayurvedic Man’ exhibition from the Wellcome Collection’s website.

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Pharmacy advertisement, Delhi, 1993. Courtesy of Wellcome Library, London

Pharmacy advertisement (1993), Delhi. Courtesy of Wellcome Library, London

Illustration showing a Zodiac Man, with Persian annotations, Diagram in the Tashrīh-i Manṣūrī style, watercolour, 19th century. Courtesy of Wellcome Library, London

Illustration showing a Zodiac Man, with Persian annotations (19th century), diagram in the Tashrīh-i Manṣūrī style. Courtesy of Wellcome Library, London

Raksha Kali or Durga - Deity of Epidemics, watercolour, 1920. Courtesy of Wellcome Library, London

Raksha Kali or Durga – Deity of Epidemics (1920). Courtesy of Wellcome Library, London

An Indian person in a yogic posture, gouache painting, 19th Century. Courtesy of Wellcome Library, London

An Indian person in a yogic posture (19th century). Courtesy of Wellcome Library, London

Above, the emperor Aurangzeb consults a physician; below, one of the emperor's sons is attended by physicians. Courtesy of Wellcome Library, London

Above, the emperor Aurangzeb consults a physician; below, one of the emperor’s sons is attended by physicians. Courtesy of Wellcome Library, London

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