Artist in Residence

Artist in Residence

Being in hospital can be a frightening time for many children and their families. Frequent and long-term patients regularly experience the boredom and frustration that comes with being bound to the hospital. In order to alleviate this and make a child and family’s visit to hospital as positive as possible, the Perth Children’s Hospital Foundation direct donations to a wide range of complementary services.

Mikaela with PMH patient Emily and her Buddhist-inspired ‘Stupa.’

Now in its fourth year at PMH, the Artist in Residence program, in partnership with the School of Special Educational Needs and Medical and Mental Health, offers patients, family and friends a welcome distraction from being in hospital. Evidence shows that art therapy helps children feel more relaxed and happy at a time that may be stressful.

Artists Michaela Castledine and Lucinda Crimson have run over 140 workshops, working alongside children during bedside visits as well as in group sessions conducted in Megazone.

PMH patient Maitland showing his ‘softies’ creation.

These workshops, delivered in one-to two- hour periods, gave children new skills and instant results, allowing both those that were in for a short hospital visit as well as those that were in PMH for an extended time, the self-confidence to create amazing pieces of art. Children were able to display their artworks above their beds or have them exhibited in the Megazone corridor.

Michaela’s projects included the construction of Buddhist inspired temples called Stupas, Crocheting for Calmness – learning to crochet with rope, exploring the meditative quality of working repetitively with your hands and the writing and illustrating of animal origin stories, such as “How the Rabbit got Its Tail”. These stories were then compiled into a book, professionally printed and given to all participating children throughout the hospital.

Lucinda worked on several textile and printing projects, including block printing with teenagers from Ward 7teen and the creation of ‘softies’, hand stitched soft toys that were designed entirely by the children and then drawn, hand sewn and stuffed, giving them a positive memento of their stay in hospital.

Click below to see more about this fantastic project:

If you’d like to help give kids the chance to create through our Artist in Residence program, donate today.

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