Words Laura Bannister
Images courtesy Wellcome Library, London
In 2014, Wellcome Images split their archives wide open, releasing 100,000 pieces of visual culture for users to copy, distribute, edit and manipulate for personal or commercial use. There were Goya etchings and Persian horoscopes for the 15th-century prince Iskandar. There were details from 1800s paintings-in-books detailing the Life of Buddha, and stock-like photographs of scientists in the labs at Oxford University. Among the treasures is a hefty collection of printed advertising ephemera plucked from around the world relating to the AIDS crisis, gay life, and the combatting of homophobia. Museum has sifted through to pick out the best: cleverly designed, heartwarming, heartbreaking, all of it.