Collection Ethnomedicine

The Collection Ethnomedicine „Sammlung Armin Prinz der Österreichischen Ethnomedizinischen Gesellschaft“ was founded 1999. It was formerly located in the historical building “Josephinum” where the Medical University of Vienna provided space for documentation and storage. In 2017 it has been donated to the Weltmuseum Wien


The Collection comprises over 2000 objects and paintings from all over the world that are in its widest sense related to ethnomedicine, medical anthropology and nutritional anthropology. The Collection has been digitized with the support of the Austrian National Bank.


The collection’s inventory can be divided in three different areas: objects related to medical, spiritual and nutritional practices and/or the human body, such as herbal and animal drugs, synthetically fabricated medicines; objects for and against evil magic, medicinal devices, aphrodisiacs, smoking devices, ritual instruments as well as statues and depictions of transcendental beings.


Image: Ekunde: Sammlung Armin Prinz der Österreichischen Ethnomedizinischen Gesellschaft, Weltmuseum Wien


Furthermore – and that’s where the collections special emphasis lies – it consists of more than 200 acrylic and reverse glass paintings manufactured by local artists in Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Senegal and the Dominican Republic that illustrate healthcare situations, healing procedures, ritual actions and believes connected to healing, sorcery and mythology. The third area of the collection is constituted of visual media such as photographs and films.


More information on the Collection can be found here:


Numerous paintings from this collection have been recently shown at the exhibition „Congo Stars“ at the Kunsthaus Graz.


Subsequently the exhibition has moved to Tübingen, Germany until June 2019