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Artwork returns to the walls of Delta Hospital
As patients and visitors make their way along the corridors of Delta Hospital it’s hard not to notice the colourful paintings have returned to the walls which stood bare for nearly four months.
The hospital has come to an arrangement with the South Delta Artists’ Guild to restore the paintings to the walls, where local artists have displayed their art for the past 15 years.
“When I came in here and saw them back it was nice,” said visitor Audrey Calvori. “It added a touch.”
Calvori said she noticed right away when the paintings were removed in late September 2013 because the walls looked so bare and dull.
Guild member Barb McCurdy said at the time the art was removed after learning about a new policy from Fraser Health which governs artwork on display in public and patient care areas. The nine-page document said all artwork must be reviewed and approved by the appropriate committee and must meet the Fraser Health Authority artwork content guidelines.
As well, the policy said artwork for sale in hospitals can only be sold if the proceeds go toward the hospital foundation.
But a week later Annette Garm, director of site operations for Delta Hospital, said it was all a big misunderstanding and the hospital only wanted to temporarily remove the paintings the refurbish the walls.
“We’re just so happy at the Artists’ Guild to have our local artists represented here again in the hospital and to have the [Delta Hospital] auxiliary fund the new slat wall for the hanging of these paintings, which keeps it in line with most of the modern galleries,” said McCurdy.
Over a dozen paintings are now back and will be changed every four months by the guild.
An informal agreement between the auxiliary and the guild had been in place for more than 15 years, whereby 10 per cent of the proceeds from paintings went to the auxiliary, five per cent to the guild, and the rest to the artist.
Under the new agreement, the hospital will receive 10 per cent of the sale instead of the auxiliary.
But auxiliary spokeswoman Elaine Canning said she’s just delighted the artwork is back. The auxiliary funded the $3,000 installation of slats so the paintings could be hung professionally.
She said the art fits well within the patient care and comfort philosophy of the auxiliary.
“We really felt it would be to the benefit of the community as a whole to have the art back there,” she said. “I always want to thank people who buy in our gift shop or our thrift shop because the money goes to projects like this. The community really appreciates this.”
Canning said nobody really knew how much the community would miss the artwork until it was removed. Now that it’s back she said people have told her how pleased they are.
The auxiliary is looking at expanding artwork along more of the hospital’s wall in the near future.