Loyola’s chapter of Phi Delta Epsilon’s second annual Anatomy Fashion Show drew in a crowd of more than 200 — about double the size of last year’s attendance — to the Damen Multi Purpose Room April 15.
Snacks, music and raffle prizes greeted guests at the door of the medical fraternity’s charity show. Ticket proceeds, as well as online donations, will benefit Lurie’s Children’s Hospital, according to Danny Chmielewski, president of Loyola’s chapter of Phi Delta Epsilon, an organization for medical students.
The Anatomy Fashion show is a tradition celebrated internationally by chapters that can facilitate the show, Chmielewski said. Loyola’s chapter, which was founded four years ago, joined the tradition last year.
Student models, comprised of both fraternity members and non-members, wearing anatomical designs painted onto skin or skin-toned underwear by student artists walked a short runway to upbeat music and, as emcee Margarita Loxas called them “really bad anatomy puns.”
Although the show didn’t start until almost 6 p.m., preparations for the show began at 10 a.m., according to artist and first year Ally Moors. She said painting the muscular system on her model took about four and a half hours. Fifty models and 35 artists, all student volunteers loosely connected to the fraternity, participated in the show, according to Chmielewski.
“We do make sure that all of the systems that our models are painted with are anatomically correct,” Chmielewski said. “We [give] the artists a diagram of the system from a textbook and they do their best to get it pretty accurate, minus the creative liberties taken by some of the artists. They’re always fun to see.”
The designs inspired Moors also, but she kept her design simple because she wasn’t confident in her knowledge of the systems.
“It’s so much more creative than just systems on bodies,” Moors said. “Mine was pretty plain because I didn’t really know what I was doing, but some people put really cool twists on it, or really cool interpretations of different systems.”
Not everyone agreed the paint counted as fashion, as some thought it failed to serve any utilitarian purpose.
“It isn’t so much fashion as it is drawing organs on people,” said senior David Saffo, who attended the show to support the fraternity. “It’s really cool though, to see people modeling different organs for a cause instead of clothes.”
Despite the differences in opinion, most agreed the day’s purpose was for a good cause. Lurie Children’s Hospital is Chicago’s local Children’s Miracle Network (CMN) hospital, according to Chmielewski. CMN is a nonprofit organization that raises funds and awareness for children’s hospitals and medical research. Donations will stop being accepted April 21, so although the check Phi Delta Epsilon presented April 15 was for more than $9,000, the organization has until the deadline to reach its goal of $15,000. Chmielewski is confident it will.