Ever felt inspired or moved by a work of art?
If you have, you’ll understand why so many young patients at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead reap the benefits of being surrounded by artworks. Research has shown that an optimistic outlook reflected in art can help improve a child’s wellbeing and play a vital part in the recovery and healing process.
Operation Art, an initiative of The Children’s Hospital at Westmead in collaboration with the Department of Education and Communities, involves school students—from Kindergarten to Year 10 in all NSW schools—in creating artworks for children in hospital.
Over 700 artworks are submitted every year and all of them are exhibited at the Armory Gallery at Sydney Olympic Park before 50 are chosen for a touring exhibition, which is shown at the Art Gallery of NSW and regional galleries for a year. At each gallery hosting the tour, specialist visual art workshops are held for students and teachers. The artworks are then returned to the hospital, where they become part of its permanent collection.
Other artworks are selected for display at the offices of the NSW Commission for Children and Young People, The Office of the Children’s Guardian, and the offices of the Department of Education and Communities as well as the offices of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO). These works are later donated to children’s wards at regional NSW hospitals.
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