Wednesday 13th November was the day for the installation of my project in the Radiotherapy Unit. Swift Signs, who printed the work were also installing and their team did a great job.
Above: Detail of Clinic Room W003 . These windows have an over-layer of frosted vinyl applied to the optically clear vinyl to add privacy to this sequence of Clinical Rooms along a corridor. These windows face out on to an external walkway and open space opposite the Hospital Canteen, so the need for privacy was an important issue. The vinyl is still translucent, which means natural light can pass through it.
Above: Above: Detail of Clinic Room W003
Above: Detail of Clinic Room W002
Above: Detail of Clinic Room W005 – Tech Services
Above: Detail of Clinic Room W005 – Tech Services
Above: Detail of artworks in Clothed Waiting Room CW02 (Reception). The artwork in this space is made up of transparent colour printed onto optically clear vinyl, which means it is effectively ‘see through’. This was a required detail here to allow the external landscape and as much light as possible to enter the space.
Above: Detail of artworks in Clothed Waiting Room CW02 (Reception). The vinyl has an adhesive coating, but is ‘floated’ into position on the glass with a light spray of water, allowing for final positioning. A rubber squeegee is then used to remove excess water and any air trapped between the vinyl and the glass.
Above: The External Lobby Entrance seen from outside at dusk, reveals the levels of transparency in the artwork. The impact is soft and subtle, allowing for clear views into the building. At nighttime, this effect becomes almost like stained glass.
Above: Staff Meeting Room CW06. This room was overlooked by a raised footpath accessed by a flight of steps just outside the room, making privacy an issue. We kept the top set of windows free of artwork to maximise daylight and to bring the surrounding trees and landscape into the artwork as well.
Always a relief to see projects get to this stage ! The printing has started ! Swift Signs in Weymouth are now in production of the glazing vinyl artworks for the Radiotherapy Outpatients Unit. Install is scheduled for next week. Watch this space !
Here are a few images of the final artworks – it may help to know that any white used in the design does not print – and remains completely clear – bringing the outside in and extending the impact of the work to the external landscape beyond the clinical spaces. The colours also vary in transparency and opacity, so do not appear anywhere near as flat and opaque as they do in the artwork – which is a good thing right? I thinks so…
The top and bottom screen elevations work together as two adjacent spaces, where the designs overlap. Anything printed white here is actually completely clear and does not print. so you could imagine these two images combining with the external landscape.
I have been dropping the artwork into the glazing frames to look at balance, proportion, scale & colour.
Inspired by Jurassic plant fossils, drafts & designs for discussion & comment by the project team & NHS Trusts are coming together in the studio. If successful these will be digitally printed onto glazing vinyl for the Radiotherapy Unit on the ground floor of the Robert White Cancer Centre based at Dorset County Hospital. These services are delivered by Poole Hospital as part of the wider county wide Cancer Services. The project is a collaboration between various agencies including Arts in Hospital & Poole Hospital Charity.
These artworks are presented as long elevations of ground to ceiling windows, but in reality they are a series of interlinked screens at angles to one another. For example, the External Lobby Entrance Screen will be seen through the Clothed Waiting Room Screen.
Above & Below: These are the interior views of glazed screens as they are at the moment. The Staff Meeting Room is overlooked by an unappealing brick wall & stepped access to a public footpath, which is at a higher level creating privacy issues. In the artwork designs, all areas in white will be either transparent glazing or opaque printed vinyl, allowing in light, but not views by the public. The Clothed Waiting Room and Reception area glass screens look out onto the ground floor external paved concourse linking this building to the Main Hospital and adjacent Canteen. The artwork screens will provide much needed privacy from the ground floor pedestrian areas outside and hopefully some peaceful distraction for patients coming regularly into the Radiotherapy unit.
Samples of the designs will be digitally printed at full scale and installed in the Radiotherapy Unit for further comment and confirmation that the outcome is what is desired by staff and patients.
Above: These five rooms are linked via a corridor. I have shown them as a single open space – but in reality, each is a separate private clinic room or office.
Drafts and sketches for the digitally printed glazing vinyl artwork for the ground floor Radiotherapy Unit of the Robert White Cancer Centre are now in progress in the studio. At this stage, the drafts are for comment and discussion and the final design work will be tailored in response to this process.
Inspired by Jurassic plant fossils, such as Cycads, Tree Ferns, Magnolias, Monkey Puzzle and Gingko, the ideas are developing by way of a distinct colour palette and abstract pattern-making too, as well as looking to incorporate and blend in with the glazing artworks of the Outpatient Unit on the first floor, which were completed late in December 2018. Although the two floors deliver independent services via Poole Hospital and Dorset County Hospitals, it is important that from the outside particularly, the artwork links the two floors and presents a united front elevation to all those visiting & working on this site. The Jurassic Coastand the Abbotsbury Sub-Tropical Gardens, have both been influential. The coastal geology has been a particular fascination, with stones and fossils being very much the theme of the first floor Outpatients department.
I spent Monday & Tuesday of this week in Dorchester at the new £9million Robert White Centre, based at Dorchester County Hospital. This building was part funded via a legacy from Robert White a Poole based businessman, who was treated for cancer at the Dorset Cancer Centre at Poole Hospital. Robert died in 2015.
“Robert White was a great man and an enthusiast of all things mechanical. The sale is a showcase of his life’s passion, with more than 500 lots set to raise more than £2 million for charity,” said Malcolm Barber, Bonhams Co-Chairman. “The collection is the result of a life’s passion for photography – Robert was the founder of one of the UK’s leading photographic retailers – and his adoration for motorcycles. We’re delighted to be able to offer this for sale, and for such a great charitable cause.”
“The money raised from the Robert White Collection will help to fund essential improvements in cancer diagnosis and treatment in Dorset, including:
– New cancer treatment radiotherapy facilities at Dorset County Hospital to benefit patients in the west of the county, meaning shorter travel times – New computerised tomography (CT) scanner for Poole Hospital, accurately identifying cancer site to enable targeted treatment – Permanent positron emission tomography (PET) scanner at Poole Hospital – a sophisticated imaging technique widely used for cancer, providing highly detailed imagery showing tumours and its response to treatment. – Education and training bursaries to enable staff working in cancer care and associated medical and diagnostic specialties to remain at the cutting edge of best practice”.
I was very kindly shown around by Amanda Sydenham, Macmillan Prescribing and Review Radiographer/Treatment floor Superintendent, and introduced to other staff members. We were accompanied by Nikki Mitchenere, Deputy General Manager – Oncology Legacy Fund at the Dorset Cancer Centre, who has commissioned me for this work.
I am now starting to work up some draft ideas and proposals. These will be circulated throughout the unit so we can get feedback from everyone. The important thing is that we do this in a collaborative and engaged manner.
Obviously, whilst there I took a quick look upstairs to see how the artwork in Outpatients was being received by everyone. I was re-assured after talking to a couple of staff members there, that this seems to be a great success. The artworks for Radiotherapy, will build upon this established colour base and iconography, adding in some new motifs and objects. It is important that the work on both floors appears to have a relationship, with elements interwoven between both floors.
A slightly blurred and abstract image taken from outside, of the first floor windows reflecting surrounding trees & a street light mixed up with the artwork. The weather was atrocious all day, with rain and high winds – not the best backdrop.
These digitally printed glazing artworks, commissioned by Arts in Hospitalfor the first floor Haematology Outpatients unit were installed in December 2018, just prior to the official opening of the Robert White Centre.
This unit is managed and operated by Dorset County Hospital.
We had a wonderful endorsement for the art project from Patricia Miller, Chief Executive of DCH.
‘I really love this. It creates such a pleasant therapeutic environment that also links to Dorset’s natural surroundings. Thank you for working so hard to create such a pleasant environment for our patients.’
My digitally printed artworks for the new Robert White Centrewere partially installed in December 2018, just prior to the official opening of the building on December 12th. The first floor glazing has now been completed in the Cancer & Haematology Outpatients Department on the first floor. This is the Haematology Outpatients department and the services are delivered by Dorset County Hospital. The artwork for the ground floor Radiotherapy Cancer Unit is now in progress. Services here are being delivered by Poole Hospital. The new Cancer Centre is an extension of the Poole Hospital-based Dorset Cancer Centre.
“The £9 million centre is an extension of the Poole Hospital-based Dorset Cancer Centre. The Dorchester unit is equipped with the latest linear accelerator (LINAC) which enables patients to receive the best-possible radiotherapy treatment. This means that cancer patients in the north, south and west of the county can receive this care in their local hospital, instead of having to travel to Poole for treatment.
The facility also includes a £1.75 million Cancer and Haematology Outpatients Department funded by the Cancer Appeal run by Dorset County Hospital Charity. This was supported by hundreds of donations from individuals, community groups as well as Trusts and Foundations.
This building has been funded in part by an extraordinarily generous legacy from Poole businessman Robert White. Robert White was treated for cancer at the Dorset Cancer Centre, part of Poole Hospital, and sadly lost his battle in November 2015. Before his death, he had resolved to support the hospital and its county-wide cancer services to benefit others and decided that he would fund a new cancer unit, now named The Robert White Centre.
Martin Clunes said: “It was my privilege to be able to officially open the new Robert White Centre.
“The incredibly generous support from the community for the DCH Cancer Appeal, as well as Robert’s generosity, leaves a remarkable legacy for patients with cancer in Dorset.” Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 2018
Some years ago a long standing family friend and close friend of my Dad was being treated for cancer. He and his wife had often been to Elgol on the shores of Lock Skavaig on the Isle of Skye. They loved this place. I too had been there and as is the case – and now slightly frowned upon – I picked up some stones from a stream bed. The stones were small, but smooth & beautifully polished to a honed satin finish by the action of water. They could be held in the hand and moved around. The feeling of them was somehow special and resonant. I still have them now, wrapped in a cloth bag for fear of damaging them. I sent one of these stones to Dad’s friend. In doing that I think we had a non verbal conversation at distance about place and memories. I like to think it was re-assuring for both of us.
I have always picked up stones. They represent something unique about place, time and experience. Geology is fascinating.
I live by the sea in Ramsgate on the Kent Coast. I walk on the beach most days. I have found many sea urchin fossils. Each has a unique story. Each stone can still trigger memories of where and when it was found, what the weather was like…was the tide in or out.
I have created work for several projects with Cancer treatment centres at a number of Hospitals, including Churchill Hospital Cancer Centre, Oxford and a Macmillan Cancer unit for Tameside General Hospital. At Tameside Hospital and found my inspiration on a 12 mile walk entitled “Journeys through the Landscapes of Tameside” – this walk eventually became the brief for the project.
Stewart Ramsden, my walking partner who compiled the walk, had also been a cancer patient at the hospital and was part of our project’s champion group. Our route was eventually described by an eccentric figure of eight. Wild Bank and Hollingworthall Moor from Godley – a 12 mile walk through town, suburb, farmland and moorland.
The following words were made from my notes on the day:
This is a walk
A meander, a physical experience or just maybe a day-dream
A walk is more often along a path
The path or footpath changes in colour, texture and topography –
but there is always a remembered route to follow or a map to guide you
or maybe a venture to somewhere new
There is a constancy in moving forward
Things seen on a walk are half experienced and half remembered
A vivid green hedge
A tyre track
A discarded toy
A cloud which looks like a tree, a stream which looks like silver, a flash of colour
Horizon merges with sky
This is a landscape with no fixed perspective
Sky reflected in water
A small stone becomes a boulder
An object picked up and carried in the hand along the way
Track marks in fields are gestural and dynamic
Distant buildings become a child’s building blocks
The layersPatterns in brickwork
Our project for the new Radiotherapy Unit at Dorset Hospitalwas similarly inspired by a walk along the Jurassic CoastI made ten years ago. I was hoping to find myself an ammonite to take home. I didn’t find any, but I saw many encased in rock by the shore. I saw the Blue Lias beds that contain giant plesiosaur fossils. The layers are like drawers in time. Each opening to another world and perhaps another wonder. I was also allowed free time to spend in the Dorset Museum Archives amongst boxes and drawers and piles of specimen stones and fossils. The way these objects were carefully curated and stored – often in intricate patterns and collections of similar sizes and or type. was inspiring and reminded me of my collections at home and of how precious they are to me. The artwork has grown out of this fascination. The stones I have created are imaginary in colour and pattern, although informed by nature. They are perhaps stones I would like to find. Stones I would hold in my imagination to remind me of journeys I have made and places I have been.
We have now had the approval and sign off on the artwork proposals following a recent meeting with key Staff and stakeholders this week. The deadline is looming. The new building opens on 12th December. The work has to be manufactured and installed before this date.
To create the digital work each element requires up to 3 copies of each shape. One blank, one black & white and one in colour. The black & white originals are a mix of hand drawn motifs and textures, which are then scanned and worked on in Photoshop. I create a series of related shapes and masks, which I can then combine with larger patterns, often in repeat.Colours are added at this stage. I will often scan objects such as found paper or leaves and work on them digitally. I take too many images in the street, of shapes of water on the pavement – or reflections in windows – or a small plant growing in a crack in the ground or on a wall. All these can trigger an idea for a pattern or story.
Work is now in progress at the brilliant Proto Glass Studios on the first stage of screen printing ceramic colour for of the NORTH SCREEN. We are collaborating with Proto Studios, specialist Architectural Glass Decorators on the production of 46sqm of screen printed, sandblasted & etched architectural glass screens for the new Hydrotherapy Pool & Therapies Unit for the RUH and RNHRD in Bath commissioned by Art at the Heart. The artwork is presented as an abstracted landscape running over both the North & the East Screens of the Pool Room – a way of encapsulating all disparate elements that have inspired my work into something engaging for the viewer, which will changes throughout the day in response to levels of daylight and direct sun.
Both the RUH & RNHRD Hospital sites were originally set in, and adjacent to open fields and expansive views of countryside. Easy to imagine then how beneficial this must have been to those patients and staff who experienced this.
It is now commonly understood that exposure to natural spaces, planting and nature within medical and healing environments is of great benefit and assists in the recovery and positive experience of patients and staff alike .
This landscape is populated with recognisable motifs, such as flowers, deer and trees, woven together with abstracted forms and simple repeating patterns. Local landmarks such as Kelston Round Hill also feature, as do references to the architectural decoration and built heritage of The Min and its archaic Roman Mosaics. However, the most visible motif perhaps is water, and more explicitly, the gestural movement of water as shaped by those taking treatment in the Hydrotherapy Pool. A shape made in water informed by the movement of a hand or leg. Abstractions of steam or mist appear to hover in this landscape. Water is contained within a bowl or pool. An elegant but dynamic abstract splash of water drifts across the whole of the East Screen. The connection to hot springs and flowing waters has shaped Bath into the World Heritage Site we see today.