Megan Euker, 2022-23 Fulbright Scholar, Curates Exhibition at The International Museum of Surgical Science in Chicago
From May 12, 2023 to July 23rd, the distinguished institution will be the venue for two-time U.S./Italy Fulbright recipient Megan Euker’s latest curatorial exhibition. Euker is an Italian and American artist and designer. The exhibition will include students whom she has taught and mentored from the Accademia di Belle Arti in Siracusa, Sicily where Euker completed her second Fulbright project, “Sangue Tira,” Italian for “blood pulls.” The presentation will also include select projects from her students at the University of South Florida, Tampa and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Euker is the acclaimed Project Manager at San Rocco Therapeutics (SRT), a pharmaceutical company dedicated to curing Sickle Cell Disease and Thalassemia. SRT is headquartered in both Tampa and Italy. Through collaboration with leading universities, SRT is dedicated to providing the safest, most affordable gene therapy to cure patients of “orphan diseases.” Orphan diseases are those which typically lack research because of lack of financial incentive.
Euker’s six month Fulbright scholar project included research related to her work with SRT, and teaching Design in Sicily at the Mediterranean Arts & Design Program (MADE), Accademia di Belle Arti Siracusa.
In part, what makes this anticipated presentation so special is that it amalgamates Euker’s artistic talents with her responsibilities at SRT. Her work as SRT project manager, artist, and teacher all have the goal of increasing accessibility of therapies, treatments, bettering lives and ultimately curing patients.
Euker’s students unanimously received recognition through the Rarinsieme Project/Scienza Partecipata, https://www.scienzapartecipata.it/project/bodies-iii/, coordinated through Italy’s National Center for Rare Diseases and the Institute of Higher Health. The honor is due to the invention and realization of the aforementioned projects. The Rarinsieme initiative recognizes designers’ projects conceptualized to improve the quality of life, especially for those facing challenges (often medical in nature).
One project in the exhibition is “Tendon Management.” These are braces designed to prevent ligament pulling and shoulder dislocation throughout the day. In addition, these braces are designed to be fashionable and act similar to a harness as an accessory. Living with disability aids often means being forced to use braces for utility rather than aesthetics, which leaves many people discouraged by the sterile medical look. The artist, Shauna Miller, describes, “I wanted to bridge the gap between fashion and necessity with these aids.”
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