Clay is a wonderful medium in which to express creative community and corporate ideas about identity, celebration, involvement, or simply used for decoration. Sculptures, murals, friezes, reliefs, placements, installations… anything is possible and the only limitation is that of imagination, as illustrated by the commission for the Nottingham NHS Trusts below. I thrive on the challenge of working with clients to realise their vision, so if you have an idea, no matter how ‘off the wall’, get in contact and run it past me without obligation.
60 HANDS, 60 PEOPLE, 60 YEARS
I was asked to create an installation to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the NHS. The project involved 60 people aged from one to sixty who were willing to create their handprint in clay. Participants were from all walks of life but had a connection to the QMC or City Hospitals in Nottingham. They ranged from current and ex patients to staff and a few VIPs.
The sixty hands are mounted beside a photo of the person and their story. The installation is split and mounted in corridors, with 30 hands hung at the QMC hospital and thirty at City Hospital.
From the artist’s point of view it has been an exciting project. The variety of hand shapes and individual stories has been fascinating. It is really all about the people, and the NHS is nothing if not about people. One woman who was our sixtieth participant told us it cost her mother 1/6d to give birth to her! She even brought us the certificate as evidence.
I hope visitors to the hospitals will spend time reading the stories and looking at the shape of hands. The work was unveiled to coincide with the nation’s celebration of the National Health Service, and is a fitting reminder of just how important the service is to people.
“I want to say a huge thank you. I had the idea before I came to the Trust, and you built on it and made it exceed my expectations. It lives. It’s fantastic and you are a patient, very talented and lovely lady.”
Karlie Thompson, Assistant Director of Communications, HHS Trust.