San Francisco, United States

Open Wide: 500 Years of Dentistry in Art

Open Wide: 500 Years of Dentistry in Art

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10 tour stops


Apollonia and The Dentist

Two artworks, made centuries apart, that introduce themes throughout the show.

2 min

The 17th-Century Tooth Puller

What is a bleeding bowl? What is a tooth key? How are they related to dentistry?

2 min

The Dentist's Bookshelf

Four books pivotal in advancing the dental profession.

2 min

A Mechanism Too Perfect

Early porcelain dentures, teeth that "chew continuously", and enamel shade samples.

2 min

The Female Dentist

In the art you've seen so far, has there been a female dentist?

1 min

Ukiyo-e Prints on Dental Practices

Humorous treatments noted in a lampoon highlight ukiyo-e prints related to dentistry.

2 min

Marc Chagall's Toothache

Marc Chagall uses every detail to make the discomfort of a toothache palpable.

1 min

Out Hunting for Teeth: Goya, Dalí, and Chagoya

Three renowned artists depict the same scene: a girl taking teeth from a hanged man.

2 min

Illustrations from The Toothache

How far would you go to avoid seeing the dentist?

1 min

Art from UCSF School of Dentistry Yearbooks

Cartoons hint at how dental students saw their profession and themselves.

2 min


What do a famous French dentist, Snow White, and a Victorian gentleman with a pesky toothache have in common? They are a few of the harassed, horrified, and often hilarious figures you can find in Open Wide: 500 Years of Dentistry in Art.

Developed around selections from the collection of Dr. Morton G. Rivo, D.D.S., former Chief of Periodontics at the UCSF Medical Center at Mount Zion, Open Wide offers a glimpse into how perspectives on dentistry – and dentistry itself – have changed over the centuries.

The artworks are supplemented by artifacts, rare books, and other materials from UCSF Archives & Special Collections. Displays are on three floors of the UCSF Library at 530 Parnassus Avenue, San Francisco.

Offline map included

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