The Art of Blood: Surreal Illustrations Of The Human Body (1967)

Below are illustrations from the 1967 book Le Livre de la Sante by Joseph Handler, volume 4: La Machine Humaine. Le Sang. Coeur et Systeme Cardiovasculaire. In all there are 20 volumes in Handler’s educational book series. Together they form a Big Book Of Health, a series to collect and marvel at. As 50 Watts notes, the books were “used to teach school children in Tehran”. Which makes us wonder what the Iranian kids and the French ex-pats were on? (Roland Topor illustrates Handler’s volume on mental wellbeing on volume 9: L’homme et son Esprit.)

The illustrations are fascinating, beautiful, intriguing and stylish. They help us understand the glorious human machine whilst showing us through art and skill that being human is not all about mechanics. There’s more than a spray of magic in the cogs:

 

La circulation du sang, illus. M. Simeon, Le Livre de la Sante by Joseph Handler

La circulation du sang, illus. M. Simeon

Le coeur et les vaisseaux, illus. G. Falk

Le coeur et les vaisseaux, illus. G. Falk

La vitamine b12 et la maladie de Biermer, illus. M. Garnier, Le Livre de la Sante by Joseph Handler

La vitamine b12 et la maladie de Biermer, illus. M. Garnier

Formation des elements du sang dans la moelle, illus. E. Patergnani, Le Livre de la Sante by Joseph Handler 5

Formation des elements du sang dans la moelle, illus. E. Patergnani

Planche scolaire iranienne

Planche scolaire iranienne

Maladies coronariennes et surmenage, photomontage by R. Cieslewicz

Maladies coronariennes et surmenage, photomontage by R. Cieslewicz

Les varices, illus. Osterwalder

Les varices, illus. Osterwalder

L'embolie pulmonaire, illus. L. Lenica

L’embolie pulmonaire, illus. L. Lenica

L'electrocardiogramme, illus. Osterwalder

L’electrocardiogramme, illus. Osterwalder

Les contituants du sang, illus. Broutin

Les contituants du sang, illus. Broutin

Les faisceaux musculaires du coeur, illus. Broutin, after A. Bertolasi

Les faisceaux musculaires du coeur, illus. Broutin, after A. Bertolasi

Influence du tabac sur le coeur et les vaisseaux, illus. B. Suter

Influence du tabac sur le coeur et les vaisseaux, illus. B. Suter

La chirurgie des malformations congenitales, illus. Osterwalder a

La chirurgie des malformations congenitales, illus. Osterwalder a

La chirurgie des malformations congenitales, illus. Osterwalder b

La chirurgie des malformations congenitales, illus. Osterwalder b

La machine coeur-poumon, illus. P. Wyss, Laboratoires Ciba

La machine coeur-poumon, illus. P. Wyss, Laboratoires Ciba

Le Livre de la Sante by Joseph Handler

Le greffe de moelle, illus. H. Widmann

Les malformations congenitales du coeur, illus. P. Wyss

Les malformations congenitales du coeur, illus. P. Wyss

Formation de l'embryon, illus. P. Wyss

Formation de l’embryon, illus. P. Wyss

Le coeur, pompe a quartre temps, illus. J. Lehl

Le coeur, pompe a quartre temps, illus. J. Lehl

 

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