This project invited members of the public to record memories of their time at the hospital on postcards which were designed using the artwork from the certificates issued to those who made contributions to the building of the hospital. I am particularly grateful to the residents of the Sanctuary Care Home for the contributions of their residents.

Following on from this I ran two community projects with Wantage Museum and local schools to make panels to decorate the hospital corridors and waiting areas.

Project 1. Doctrine of Signatures

‘The doctrine of signatures’ held that many minerals, plants and animals have ‘signatures’, i.e. visible resemblance to human organs, bodily fluids or disease symptoms, and that these signatures indicate the curative effects of natural things for instance, a walnut looks like a brain, and therefore could cure brain diseases.

Workshops were held at Wantage Museum and King Alfred's School in which participants looked at old medical vessels from the museum's handling collection. These included eyebaths, measuring cups and glasses. Using these vessels as containers, everyone drew a plant which related to an illness or part of the body.

Each drawing was cut out and included on the shelves of a painted medicine cabinet. Each of the final panel measures 1.50m x 1.50m.


Finished Panels

The completed panels are hung on the walls of the corridors to the waiting room. One design was framed separately as it links the parts of the eye and the iris flower. This is sited near the Ophthalmology department.

Project 2. When You Fall - The Hospital Will Catch You

Working with groups of children at Wantage CofE Primary School, the younger children painted and cut out leaves for the insects to live in. Older children made the insects and came up with the title for the final piece. Friends of the hospital made letters to spell out the words. Each panel shows the golden key, a symbolic key used at the opening ceremony of the hospital Each panel measures 2m x 2m.

 Return to Projects