Cardiac Chaos
Art and Medicine

Cardiac Chaos

Lori Shocket, Siegfried Knop

Thousand Oaks, CA 91362, USA

Corresponding to: Lori Shocket, MD. Thousand Oaks, CA 91362, USA. Email: Website:

Submitted Nov 28, 2013. Accepted for publication Dec 08, 2013.

doi: 10.3978/j.issn.2223-3652.2013.12.04

I find the heart to be one of the most fascinating organs in the human body because of the complex interplay between muscular activity and electrical coordination. The fragility and sensitivity of this life-nourishing system is my inspiration to visually explore the constant balance that exists between absolute perfection and chaos.

These paintings as a group are entitled Cardiac Chaos (Figures 1-4). When beginning an exploration of an organ system, I like to begin by doing a few exploratory studies to get a sense of where I want to go on a final over-sized piece (Figure 4). I start with a pencil sketch (Figure 1) that is representative of the subject matter and develop my concept through a series of acrylic explorations (Figures 2,3).

Figure 1 Cardiac Chaos, first sketch.
Figure 2 Cardiac Chaos, study 1. 7" × 11" acrylic on paper.
Figure 3 Cardiac Chaos, study 2.
Figure 4 Cardiac Chaos, final. 48" × 60" acrylic on canvas.

The majority of my work is about visualization of the healing process on a cellular level. The microscopic world and the healing mechanisms of the body are not only miraculous, they are also beautiful. My work as a physician inspires my work as an artist, and my artistic vision inspires my work as a doctor. I believe that art builds a bridge between what our souls know and what our bodies create. It is about the merging of the conscious and unconscious, where reality and possibility converge.

The final painting in the series was produced collaboratively by myself and my father, a signature member of the National Watercolor Society. We work together as a team, exchanging ideas and solutions until mutually agreeing that the work has reached completion. We call our process “partner painting”, and while working together in this configuration, we collaborate in a unique way that blends both our life perspectives.


Disclosure: The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Cite this article as: Shocket L, Knop S. Cardiac Chaos. Cardiovasc Diagn Ther 2014;4(1):52-53. doi: 10.3978/j.issn.2223-3652.2013.12.04