The UCF College of Medicine recently unveiled The Dean’s Art Gallery on the first floor of the new medical education building. The gallery features more than 50 pieces of art – photography to pencil drawings, chalk to pottery – created by College of Medicine students, faculty and staff members.

“I love that everybody is here and is loving the artwork,” said Dr. Deborah German, vice president of medical affairs and dean of the College of Medicine at the gallery opening. “We should always be celebrating the healthy spirit that lives in all of us.”

Like so many good ideas, the gallery came from collaboration – conversations between the Dean and other art lovers, like M-2 student Tiffany Chen. Tiffany, a History of Arts major at Johns Hopkins University, said she has always been fascinated with the role of art in healing. As an undergraduate, she studied the role that an audience member’s viewpoint plays in appreciating art. “People always want to know the artist’s message,” she said. “But the viewer is part of the experience. Appreciating art isn’t a passive experience.”

The gallery contains several photographs by Dr. Diane Jacobs, professor of Microbiology. Dr. Jacobs said she was smitten with photography as a child watching her dad take pictures with an old Brownie camera. She uses photography during travels “to capture the moment and bring it back. I see things in a different way when I photograph. I see them in a frame. It’s fun.”

For Dr. Mohammed Khalil, assistant professor of Anatomy, oil painting is an opportunity to celebrate another of his passions – cultural diversity. “I love oils because I love the blend of colors,” he said. “Often you appreciate the beauty of a color because of the colors that surround it.”