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:
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