USW students' art celebrates nurses' work

Growth by Ethan Gwyn. Nurture exhibition. St Woolos Hospital, Newport. Neil Gibson, May 2017

Growth by Ethan Gwyn

ART that celebrates health workers is going on display at a Newport hospital to mark International Nurses’ Day on May 12.

Entitled ‘Nurture – Celebrating the Nursing Profession at St Woolos Hospital’, the pieces have been produced as part of a collaboration between Gwent Arts in Health (GARTH) and students on the BA (Hons) Creative andTherapeutic Arts degree at the University of South Wales (USW).

Second-year students undertook work that responded to GARTH’s professional brief, which was to create artwork for the corridors of St Woolos hospital that would both brighten the walls and celebrate the work done by nurses since 1915.

Course leader Beth Pickard said: “Each student has explored a different side of the brief but every one of them has drawn on visits to the hospital, historical research and, very importantly, dialogues with the nurses of St Woolos themselves.

“This was a valuable opportunity for students to develop their understanding of the therapeutic potential of artworks in hospitals through professional engagement with established arts in health organisation, GARTH.

“The students are very thankful to have been in contact with members of the nursing profession at St Woolos whose insight and personal stories have provided much of the inspiration for this exhibition.

“Key themes that emerged from these exchanges were the nurse as compassionate, nurturing and resilient – a person working for the greater good through compassion and teamwork.”

Sarah Goodey, of GARTH, added: “Working with the USW students has given us the chance to commission up-and-coming artists to produce exciting and interesting work that fits a particular brief.

“What they have produced celebrates and reflects the nursing profession, in particular the nursing heroes and heroines from Newport.

“It’s great to see how this work has enhanced the hospital environment for patients, relatives and staff.”

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