Teaching watercolor of advanced breast cancer

Dublin Core


Teaching watercolor of advanced breast cancer


Breast Neoplasms
Henry Jacob Bigelow Watercolor Collection
Wallis, Oscar
Bigelow, Henry Jacob, 1818-1890
Teaching Aids and devices
Teaching Methods
Harvard Medical School. Department of Anatomy
Fitz, Reginald, 1885-1953


After Jean Cruveilhier's Anatomie pathologique du corps humain, vol. 2, liv. 31, pl. 2


Large watercolor showing several views of severe breast cancer. The top shows the neck, shoulders, and breasts of a woman with breast cancer. Raised bumps completely surround the left breast, and arch over the top of the right breast. The right breast has black tissue around the bottom and sides of the breast, and the skin on the surface of the breast is gone, exposing pink flesh and black areas of necrosis. The lower left image shows a cut away view of the tissue in the right breast of the same patient, showing how the tumors extend throughout the breast tissue. The right image shows a lateral view of the left breast. Watercolor is framed in green sewn textile, with metal grommets in each of the four corners.


Wallis, Oscar

Date Created



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Access Rights

Accessing collections in the Warren Anatomical Museum and the Warren Anatomical Museum archive requires advanced notice. Please submit a request to Public Services at chm@hms.harvard.edu to access the displayed item

Is Part Of

Warren Anatomical Museum (21142.281)


Original work can be found in the Countway Rare Books Collection (f Treadwell 1101)




watercolors (paintings)




Henry Jacob Bigelow employed artist Oscar Wallis exclusively from 1848 - 1854 to paint a series of large teaching watercolors to illustrate Bigelow's lectures at Harvard Medical School. Wallis painted the teaching diagrams from local subjects and from the atlases of established medical authorities. The effort cost Bigelow $6,000. In 1890 Bigelow presented the watercolors to Reginald H. Fitz to be used in the Harvard Medical School's Department of Anatomy. The watercolors were transferred into the Warren Anatomical Museum between 1890 and 1930.

Still Image Item Type Metadata

Physical Dimensions

69 W x 100 H cm




Wallis, Oscar, “Teaching watercolor of advanced breast cancer,” OnView, accessed July 15, 2024, https://collections.countway.harvard.edu/onview/items/show/13250.