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Conquest of Disease

Jose Maria Sert

Spanish. 1876 - 1945

North Corridor of 30 Rockefeller Plaza

The first commission Jose Maria Sert received for Rockefeller Center was to paint four murals to decorate the ends of the elevator banks. The overall theme, as dictated by Rockefeller’s art committee, was: “These will explain man’s new mastery of the material universe.” The second of these four murals, Conquest of Disease, deals with the development of modern medicine, especially the concept of inoculations. It depicts doctors inoculating lines of people, relevant at a time when many people were fearful of live virus injections to prevent smallpox.

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