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Frank H. Netter, M.D.

From scalpel to sable brush.

Frank Netter was the son of working class immigrants who owned a stationery store in the theater district of New York. In his youth, all he ever wanted to do was to paint pictures, yet he entered medical school at the urging of his mother. He finished an internship in medicine and surgery at Bellevue Hospital, but found that there was more demand for his sable brush than for his scalpel, and for the next fifty years devoted himself full time to making medical illustrations.

Netter moved in both the glamorous New York art world and intellectual medical circles. He lived in opulent homes on Long Island and in Palm Beach, lunched at the Society of Illustrators with the likes of Norman Rockwell and Rube Goldberg, and at the great teaching hospitals consulted with hundreds of medical experts, including Drs. Michael DeBakey, C. Everett Koop, Albert Sabin and Paul Dudley White, and single-handedly documented the great medical advances of the 20th century.

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