The diverse range of visual art, interactive creative events and performances transform our hospital into the warm, supportive and engaging environment needed to improve the health and wellbeing of children and young people.
Research demonstrates that the presence of visual art, involvement in creative activities and musical, cultural and theatrical experiences can contribute to positive health outcomes for patients. The arts provides patients, families, staff and visitors with a welcome distraction from what is sometimes a stressful environment, and serves as a reassuring reminder of the meaningful and enjoyable aspects of life.
Arts in health programs also provide children and young people with a sense of connection to the world outside the hospital. Our art collection showcases works by Queensland-born and based artists as well as those with an important connection to the state, such as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists. The art collection is regularly refreshed with new works—like all contemporary art collections, it is dynamic and evolving according to the needs of the hospital and its patients.
Express yourself with a variety of art and craft activities that are available within the hospital. You might want to take part in fun art activities, or simply get a creativity pack sent straight to your room or bed.
Arts in health programs are internationally recognised as improving the hospital experience by promoting the power of the creative imagination. The arts in health field is supported by specialist academic centres and foundations, international symposia, and a growing body of professional literature.
Arts in health consultancy
We are highly experienced in providing a range of arts in health consultancy services to hospital and health facilities. With extensive theoretical and research knowledge and practical management experience in arts in health, we can confidently advise on all aspects of developing integrated programs.
Our valued partners
The Children’s Health Queensland Arts in Health Program is supported by partnerships and collaborations with several major cultural and academic organisations. From subsidising the hospital choir, to conducting joint research projects, to providing creative resources and developing a range of exciting performance opportunities for patients, families and staff, these partnerships are the lifeblood of the program.
A Little Community is a site-specific installation responding to the dynamic tree-form architecture of the Queensland Children’s Hospital. A sculptural branch extends from each floor of the atrium, populated by young and adult Eclectus parrots, a species whose habitat extends from the Pacific to the North Queensland rainforest. I wanted to make an optimistic, colourful artwork and the beautiful markings of the Eclectus parrots offered great inspiration. The higher branches in the building are populated by male parrots, whose green colours offer camouflage in the tree foliage; below in the lower levels the female Eclectus like to search for berries, seeds and fruit, as part of their healthy high-fibre diet. Their markings range in the red colour spectrum.
Children are the most perceptive and astute audience for contemporary art. I wanted A Little Community to be readily accessible, speaking directly to a new generation of techno savvy, expert communicators. In some well-known desert island and pirate stories, the character of a parrot could be said to be a bit like a device for recording the adventure, a living iPod. “’Now that bird,’ Treasure Island’s Long John Silver says of his parrot Captain Flint, ‘is, maybe, two hundred years old… She’s sailed with England – the great Cap’n England, the pirate. She’s been at Madagascar, and at Malabar, and Surinam, and Providence, and Portobello… She was at the boarding of the Viceroy of the Indies out of Goa, she was, and to look at her you would think she was a baby.’”
Marlene Holroyd – Language groups: Kugu and Thaayorre
This whimsical sculpture is made from ‘Ghost nets’ – nets that are discarded by commercial fishing boats and then wash up on reefs and beaches, often with a detrimental impact on marine life and ecosystems. People from many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in the region collect and repurpose the nets, for both artworks and utilitarian purposes. Aside from the fun and interesting items such as this sculpture, there is a serious environmental message in these works. Ghost nets, found materials, acrylic paint
The Glad Tomorrow
This sculpture acts as a constellation of cross-boomerangs flowing around the columns on Raymond Terrace at the entrance to the Queensland Children’s Hospital. The cross-boomerang is a unique motif that comes from Tony’s Country in the rainforests of North Queensland. It is a symbol of protection. The artist designed the motif to welcome children, their families and friends into the hospital. Sculptural installation: hard wood, acrylic paint, stainless steel
Mornington Island Birri (Sea Eagle Markings) 2014
Wayne was born at Lardil and is a senior cultural custodian and a member of a big extended family. He has travelled widely as a traditional dancer and his artworks always depict the stories he is entitled to depict, passed down from the teachings of his grandparents and his knowledge of Birri country, the home of the sea eagle. In many ways for men of Wayne’s generation, painting has become a way to sing and dance again. Designs he carried on his body to countries and audiences around the world are now put on canvas as a symbol of cultural identity. Acrylic on canvas
Me Me Dreaming 2014
Richard Bell – Language groups: Kamilaroi, Kooma, Jiman, Gurang Gurang
This series of paintings and prints includes highly coloured panels in which many layers of the words ‘Me, Me, Me’ are repeated, like a chant of self-affirmation. The artist has altered the perspective of the paintings so that from some angles the words read ‘We, we, we’ as a reminder that individuals need communities and vice versa. The artwork depicts the cathartic experience of artistic self-expression and art’s positive function in the developing child, from childhood to adolescence and beyond. Acrylic paint and digital prints on panel
Megan is a descendant of the Quandamooka people from Minjerribah/North Stradbroke Island. She explores the impact of settlement on Aboriginal people by studying old records such as maps and planning documents. Each location she paints is an important site in local Indigenous history. Megan overlays the maps with her own painting (including in this case the beautiful blue waters of Moreton Bay) as a way of reclaiming the land and sea for her people. Many of the places she chooses to paint are familiar to families as favourite holiday destinations. Maps, Indian ink and acrylic on canvas
Gary Namponan – Language groups: Wik-Alkan/Wik-Ngathan
Aurukun is situated on the western side of Cape York Peninsula. It is one of the larger communities, established as a Presbyterian mission in 1904. The Wik and Kugu Arts and Crafts Centre is an important community hub. Artists of Aurukun are famous for their sculptures, the most popular among them being camp dogs. This series of prints immortalises the famous Aurukun dogs in a new medium, printmaking. In almost all Aboriginal communities throughout Australia, dogs dominate the landscape. They roam the streets in packs and lie in the shade; in the evening, they seek out an ‘owner’ to feed them leftovers. Collectively they are known as ‘camp dogs’ and in the case of Aurukun, have the name ‘Ku’. Etching on paper with added colour
Eric Norman – Language group: Thaayorre
Eric Norman is an artist and traditional owner from Pormpuraaw, an Aboriginal Community located 700 kms northwest of Cairns on the Cape York Peninsula. Eric was born in Pormpuraaw and went to school there. He paints the wetlands (Pambe) around his homeland and shows how the rainy season brings the country alive with flowers, grasses and birds. Acrylic on canvas
Koala as Object
This artwork is part of a series titled Animal as Object – nature and culture, which Deb worked on after extensive research at the Queensland Museum. She has explored the concept of animal as object in the context of both museum taxidermy and ‘the souvenir’.
Deb Mostert has been a practising artist for over 30 years. Her latest artistic endeavours have incorporated science concepts and new research on global and environmental changes, including those that impact bird populations. Deb has exhibited widely in Australia and her work is held in many collections, including the Ipswich Art Gallery, Redland Art Gallery, and HOTA collections.
More from this artist:
Wallaby as Object
Turtle as Object
Pink bunnies first appeared at the Brisbane Festival in 2014, at various inner city locations. After the festival, a bunny was donated to the hospital and has guarded the entrance ever since. The 4 metre tall sculptures relate to characters that appear and reappear in the artist’s practice. They don’t have faces so people are free to project their own thoughts and feelings onto the artwork. For the artist, Brisbane itself is a bit like a rabbit warren, divided into zones by the meandering river. He describes Brisbane as so many different things, “really old buildings and new buildings, older people and younger people, beautiful Queenslander homes and big, gleaming skyscrapers; suburbs with apartment blocks and just up the road you are surrounded by bushland.” Fibreglass and acrylic paint