Learning to See: Art, Medical Imaging, and Project Success

How can looking at art help high school students envision a future for themselves in medicine? Learn more about a recent collaboration with Project Success for High School Students, a summer school program at Harvard Medical School that offers 11th and 12th graders from Boston and Cambridge an opportunity to explore professional pathways in the biomedical field. This collaboration builds on a program that helps doctors-in-training better understand their patients by engaging with art at the Harvard Art Museums.

Following discussion with two of this year’s high school students, Hyewon Hyun of Harvard Medical School and David Odo of the Harvard Art Museums discuss the importance of informed, empathetic close looking; how visual analysis skills can enhance patient care; and the benefits of incorporating art into medical training.


+ Project Success:

+ Pablo Ruiz Picasso, Spanish, “Mother and Child,” c. 1901. Oil on canvas. Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Bequest from the Collection of Maurice Wertheim, Class of 1906, 1951.57. © Estate of Pablo Picasso / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

+ Art Talk—On to Washington! Lewis Rubenstein and Rico Lebrun’s ’Hunger March’ Mural with Sarah Kianovsky:

+ Digital Tour—Art & Science:

+ David Odo, Director of Academic and Public Programs, Division Head, Research Curator, Harvard Art Museums;
+ Hyewon Hyun, M.D., Assistant Professor of Radiology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Principle Investigator, Case Based Introduction to Medical Imaging for Project Success;
+ Jennifer Thum, Assistant Director of Academic Engagement and Assistant Research Curator, Division of Academic and Public Programs, Harvard Art Museums;
+ Nikki Okoli, Project Success High School Student;
+ Ezra Taub, Project Success High School Student;
+ Michael Buckner, M.D., Clinical Fellow in Radiology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Department of Radiology;
+ Rocio Nunez Pepen, Program Coordinator, Project Success for High School Students;
+ Molly Ryan, Programs Manager, Harvard Art Museums.

Presented in collaboration with Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School’s Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Community Partnership

Recorded Saturday, September 26, 2020. © President and Fellows of Harvard College. Video: Division of Academic and Public Programs, Harvard Art Museums. For questions related to permission for commercial use of this video, please contact the Department of Digital Imaging and Visual Resources at

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China Says Most Rocket Debris Burned Up During Reentry

Bill Nelson

BEIJING (AP) — China’s space agency said a core segment of its biggest rocket reentered Earth’s atmosphere above the Maldives in the Indian Ocean and that most of it burned up early Sunday.

Harvard astrophysicist Jonathan McDowell, who tracked the tumbling rocket part, said on Twitter, “An ocean reentry was always statistically the most likely. It appears China won its gamble… But it was still reckless.”

People in Jordan, Oman and Saudi Arabia reported sightings of the Chinese rocket debris on social media, with scores of users posting footage of the debris piercing the early dawn skies over the Middle East.

Usually, discarded rocket stages reenter the atmosphere soon after liftoff, normally over water, and don’t go into orbit.

China’s official Xinhua News Agency later clarified that reentry occurred Sunday at 10:24 a.m. Beijing time. “The vast majority of items were burned beyond recognition during the reentry process,” the report said.

Despite that, NASA Administrator Sen. Bill Nelson issued a statement saying: “It is clear that China is failing to meet responsible standards regarding their space debris.”

The roughly 30-meter (100-foot) long rocket stage is among the biggest space debris to fall to Earth. China’s space program, with its close military links, hasn’t said why it put the main component of the rocket into space rather than allowing it to fall back to earth soon after discharging its payload, as is usual in such operations.

The Long March 5B rocket carried the main module of China’s first permanent space station — Tianhe, or Heavenly Harmony — into orbit on April 29. China plans 10 more launches to carry additional parts of the space station into orbit.

An 18-ton rocket that fell last May was the heaviest debris to fall uncontrolled since the former Soviet space station Salyut 7 in 1991.

China’s first-ever space station, Tiangong-1, crashed into the Pacific Ocean in 2016 after Beijing confirmed it had lost control. In 2019, the space agency controlled the demolition of its second station, Tiangong-2, in the atmosphere. Both had been briefly occupied by Chinese astronauts as precursors to China’s permanent station, now under construction.

In March, debris from a Falcon 9 rocket launched by U.S. aeronautics company SpaceX fell to Earth in Washington and on the Oregon coast.

China was heavily criticized after sending a missile to destroy a defunct weather satellite in January 2007, creating a large field of hazardous debris imperiling satellites and other spacecraft.

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Art Talk—How Egyptian Art Works with Jen Thum

Discover Egyptian art with curatorial fellow Jen Thum as she introduces one of her favorite works of art at the Harvard Art Museums.


+ “Tomb Relief of the Official Ptahshepses, Also Called Impy,” 2323-2150 BCE, Old Kingdom, Dynasty 6, Egypt, carved limestone, Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Gift of Nanette Rodney Kelekian in memory of George and Ilse Hanfmann,1993.222:

+Coloring Ancient Egypt—An Activity Book for Kids of All Ages:

+ Art Talk—The Ushabti of Princess Maatkare with Inês Torres:

Speaker: Jen Thum, Assistant Director of Academic Engagement and Assistant Research Curator, Division of Academic and Public Programs, Harvard Art Museums.

This video is part of our series in which curators, conservators, fellows, and graduate students share short, informal videos that offer an up-close look at works from our collections.

© President and Fellows of Harvard College. Video: Jen Thum. For questions related to permission for commercial use of this video, please contact the Department of Digital Imaging and Visual Resources at

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Streetfilms University: How We Make Effective Films

For the last few years, we have been giving the Streetfilms University seminar at colleges and conferences. From Harvard to Long Beach, audiences have been excited about learning how we make the transportation films we do, from behind-the-scenes tips to how to avoid the mistakes we have made.

Now for the first time we have compiled a truncated 25 minute Streetfilms University lesson. Filled with video clips, stills and lists of advice there is much to take in here for the beginning filmmaker as well as the person who is just curio as to how we make effective films. Perhaps one day you’ll be lucky enough to get to experience the hour plus program, but until then get something to eat and sit back and hear from Clarence Eckerson Jr, the Director of Streetfilms, on how we get it done.

And visit to watch any of our 500 Streetfilms and to download them right off Vimeo to use in your own work and presentations using the Creative Commons 3.0 license.

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