London Royal Children’s Hospital Transformed by Funny Art.
Due to the efforts of Vital Arts, a British art organization (working for Barts NHS Trust and charitably funded), the London Children’s Hospital received a whimsical and kid-friendly design. Over the last few years the hospital commissioned several artists and designers to transform the sterile space into a joyful, positive experience.
The walls of the lobby feature carnival-like signs and stenciled designs that resemble circus. The kids will feel like they’re entering a place that genuinely cares about them having positive, upbeat experiences.
“One of the most important things for me was to make the hospital not feel like a hospital,” says Donna Wilson, one of the commissioned artists. “I wanted the patients, parents and nurses all to feel relaxed, happy and stimulated by the environment that surrounds them, and by using design, you can lift the mood and well-being of the people there.”
Rug designer, author and illustrator of children’s book ‘Shh! We have a plan’ and ‘Oh No George’, Chris Haughton let his signature characters run wild in ward 7E. Rather than numbering each room Haughton decided to give each room a different animal character; a lion room, a parrot room and a fish room etc.
Each room features the same elements but with each animal, for example the ‘lion room’ has a lion’s face labelled on the door, a framed print of the lion and cub hiding in the grass, a framed woven rug of the lions portrait, and two vinyl stickers of the two lions chatting and running hidden somewhere on the walls. The framed rugs are hand-woven and made by a fair-trade group which Haughton help set up in Nepal. The rugs add an element of warmth and cosiness in an otherwise clinical and sterile environment.
The artists played with ceramics, rugs, wood, vinyl and other materials to decorate the hospital in vibrant colors. Charming drawings of animals adorn the walls and an entire ward has been transformed into a make-believe forest. In short, the place looks so good, a child might not want to leave it.
See more at the Vital Arts website