About the Collection
Portraits of Johns Hopkins Medicine, Nursing, and Public Health
The collection includes over 300 commemorative portraits of individuals associated with the major health entities of Johns Hopkins – The Johns Hopkins Hospital, The Johns Hopkins Health System, Johns Hopkins Medicine, and the Johns Hopkins University schools of Medicine, Nursing, and Public Health. The date range of the collection extends from the nineteenth century to the present. It is a growing collection with new portraits added each year. The portraits are widely distributed in the many buildings of the Johns Hopkins health divisions, including installations in boardrooms, conference rooms, auditoriums, classrooms, libraries, and some public corridors.
The collection is distinguished by the figures who are represented as well as by the artists who have depicted them. There are portraits by eminent artists including John Singer Sargent, Cecilia Beaux, William Merritt Chase, Yousuf Karsh, and James Wyeth as well as portraits by lesser-known artists. Figures represented in the collection include a cross section of institutional leaders, including donors, trustees, deans, presidents of the hospital, and directors of departments. In addition, there are portraits of much beloved faculty and other figures associated in some way with the health entities.
The authorization of portrait commissions has been a somewhat ad hoc process. Over the years, colleagues, family, grateful patients, and mentees have primarily led efforts to raise funding. As a consequence of this long standing practice, the collection is not representative of all individuals at Johns Hopkins who have made significant contributions to medicine, nursing, and public health.
The cultural properties staff of the Alan Mason Chesney Medical Archives curates the portrait collection. They oversee the appraisal, cataloging, installation, and conservation of the portraits and maintain files on their provenance and location. For more information, please contact us.