Germ City

Microbes and the Metropolis

Through April 28, 2019

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A fascinating look at New York City's battle against infectious disease.

Man and microbes have always co-habited, and their relationship has had a profound influence on human history—especially in cities, the crossroads of the movements of people, goods, and germs. Germ City: Microbes and the Metropolis explores the complex story of New York’s long battle against infectious disease—a fight involving government, urban planners, medical professionals, businesses, and activists. It reveals how our understanding of disease has changed us physically, socially, and culturally, and the surprising interplay between people and pathogens in an urban context.

This exhibition is organized by the Museum of the City of New York in collaboration with The New York Academy of Medicine and Wellcome. It is part of Wellcome’s international project Contagious Cities, which explores the interplay of people and pathogens in urban contexts. Drawing on the model of the Wellcome Collection’s “Reading Room,” Germ City features a hybrid gallery and library where visitors can view historical artifacts alongside contemporary artworks created for the exhibition, delve into the exhibition’s themes with a curated selection of books, and access a wide range of perspectives through digital interactives.

 

Microbe graphics by Isometric

Supporters

Germ City: Microbes and the Metropolis is made possible with lead support from Wellcome as part of Contagious Cities; and Valerie and John W. Rowe; with additional support from Johnson & Johnson; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; and the Honorable Keith Powers, New York City Council, District 4.

The Museum gratefully acknowledges The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s support for exhibition curator Dr. Rebecca Jacobs’s postdoctoral fellowship.

This exhibition is organized by the Museum of the City of New York in collaboration with The New York Academy of Medicine and Wellcome. It is part of Wellcome’s international project Contagious Cities, which explores the interplay of people and pathogens in urban contexts.

The Museum gratefully acknowledges the generosity of Illumina for its support of swabbing samples by Weill Cornell Medicine at Germ City educational events.

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