The American Physicians Art Association (APAA) includes about 250 members. Only non clinical material is presented in the form of painting, drawing, computer art, photography, crafts and sculpture, all being contributed by physicians from all parts of the country. Any physician who is interested in the visual arts is encouraged to join the APAA and exhibit their work at local and regional societies as well as at the national level.
The APAA was founded in 1936 by the late Francis H. Redwell, M.D., a San Francisco urologist and talented marine painter. He and several other physician artists had the first exhibition of the APAA at the convention of the American Medical Association in San Francisco in 1937. Since then the association has been dedicated to the creative avocations of physicians, including painting, drawing, sculpting, photography, handcrafts, music, dancing and other art forms.
For many years, an annual exhibit and meeting was held in conjunction with the AMA annual convention, but when they no longer held these meetings after 1978, the APAA established an association with the Southern Medical Association (SMA). Since then, the annual exhibit and meeting has been with the SMA’s fall Scientific Assembly and Meeting. The initial shows were sponsored by various drug companies. In the past few years, however the show has been sponsored by the membership of the SMA itself. In 1998, the APAA had its first “mini-exhibit” with the American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress and has had a booth nearly every year since.
Dr. Charles Best and Sir Fredrick Banting, joint Noble Prize winners for their discovery of insulin, have been honorary members of the APAA. Other famous members and past presidents include sculptress Alma Dea Morani, M.D. of Philadelphia, Meyer Melicow, M.D. of New York, Max Thorex, M.D. of Chicago, Joseph F. Montague, M.D., from New York, Rise Delmar Oschner, M.D., of Santa Barbara, and Howard C. Coggeshall, M.D., of Dallas. There have been many other noted physician artists that belonged to the APAA.
If you are interested in learning more about the APAA, please visit their website.