Tuesday, 11 June 2019

AOC Writing Competition Winner - Bola Lafe

This year the Art of Caring and Dr Karen Norman (Visiting Professor, Kingston University and St George's, University of London) asked nursing students at Kingston University and St George's University of London to come up with one word that they felt reflected the inspirational work done by the charity Nurse Reaching Out. They wrote their chosen word in wool, in their chosen language, reflecting the diversity of the students and the charity - reflecting  this years International Nurse Day theme: a truly inclusive “Health For All.”
Wool words at St George's Hospital, May/June 2019

We launched our Writing Competition in April 2019 as part of the Art of Caring exhibition. Writers from across the globe submitted short written texts of no longer than 100 words, in any format (e.g. poetry/fiction/reportage etc). They had to use at least one of the student's words in their composition. Below is the winning entry from Bola Lafe, who will be presented with his prize at the next Art of Caring exhibition at St Pancras Hospital (18th July - October 2019).

Friday, 10 May 2019

Art of Caring 2019 opens at St George's Hospital

The Art of Caring opened today at St George's Hospital in Tooting, London. It features over 250 artworks and wool words on the subject of Care and Caring. The exhibition, now in its 5th year, helps celebrate International Nurses Day on the 12th May. This year’s theme is ‘Health for All’. It includes the work of creative people of all ages, from artists to nurses, and from people who have experience of being a carer  and/or a service user.

You can find the exhibition on the First Floor, Lanesborough Wing, (Outside Ingredients Restaurant) at St George’s Hospital, London, SW17 0QT. The work will be on the walls from 10th May - 14th June 2019 so please come along and have a look. You can find all the artists exhibiting on our ARTISTS page.

You can view more photos HERE.

This year we asked nursing students at Kingston University and St George's University of London to come up with one word that they felt reflected the inspirational work done by the charity Nurse Reaching Out. They wrote their chosen word in wool, in their chosen language, reflecting the diversity of the students and the charity - reflecting  this years International Nurse Day theme: a truly inclusive “Health For All.”

Nurse Reaching Out founder Michelle Grainger visited Uganda in 2007 with colleagues and was moved to do something more after seeing how pregnant women were unable to access the hospital care they needed unless they bought their own soap, string and a razor - which they couldn’t afford. NRO now provides these items in their maternity packs and the maternal death rate has fallen as a result. They also joined forces with the "Fish and chip baby’ initiative - a term coined after babies born in the poorest areas of Africa were found wrapped in newspaper to keep warm. The mother’s had no clothes for their tiny newborns,  leaving hospital with them still wrapped in the newspaper and with reduced hopes of survival. A network was established by Michelle that utilises the knitting skills of volunteers from around the UK and beyond. NRO now sends these knitted items to Ugandan health care colleagues for those Mum’s and babies in need.  www.nursesreachingout.org

Thank you to Bryan Benge, Alban Low, Dean Reddick and Jackie Belle who helped install the exhibition. Thank you to all the staff at St George's who have already sent us messages of support.
Kindly supported by Kingston University and St George's,  University of London

Monday, 8 April 2019

Art of Caring Writing Competition 2019

Thank you to everyone who entered the Art of Caring exhibition. ART submissions are now closed. But if you would like to get involved in our Writing Competition then see below. Write 100 words by the 2nd May and be part of the exhibitions.

This year we have an exciting new twist to our Art of Caring writing competition in celebration of the theme for International Nurse Day, “Health for All.’ To reflect a truly international flavour, we have teamed up with the charity 'Nurse Reaching Out’ founded by one of our invited annual writer's competition judges,' Michelle Grainger, (Senior Lecturer at Kingston University and St George's, University of London). Michelle visited Uganda in 2007 with colleagues and was moved to do something more after seeing how pregnant women were unable to access the hospital care they needed unless they bought their own soap, string and a razor - which they couldn’t afford. NRO now provides these items in their maternity packs and the maternal death rate has fallen as a result.

NRO also joined forces with the "Fish and chip baby’ initiative - a term coined after babies born in the poorest areas of Africa were found wrapped in newspaper to keep warm. The mother’s had no clothes for their tiny newborns,  leaving hospital with them still wrapped in the newspaper and with reduced hopes of survival. A knitting scheme was started, involving kind people like Theresa, from Sussex. who describes how her involvement also changed her life: 

'I was going through a difficult time with the loss of my husband and that’s when my friend asked me if I would like to do this knitting. I love knitting and crocheting so it has given me a sense of purpose and satisfaction to knit the jumpers and hats for the newborn babies, using the “Fish and Chip Baby” pattern. It gives me something to do as I love helping others. I also knit shawls and blankets, some of which go to the babies in Uganda. This knitting for Uganda has led me to being commissioned by friends and relatives to knit for their babies, and I have several cardigans and jumpers on the go.I now find that without the knitting, life would be very hum-drum, just being at home or going shopping, whereas the knitting has got me through a difficult time and now I have something to look forward to in life’.

NRO sends the knitted items to Ugandan health care colleagues for those Mum’s and babies in need.  

Michelle’s student nurses have also benefited by enriching their nurse training by visiting the charity in Gulu, North West Uganda, a region still recovering from the devastation of civil war 20 years ago. They recently shared what they learned on this trip with their peers, explaining how new Mothers were forced to use rags after delivery, as they had no sanitary towels or maternity knickers, posing an increased risk of infection. Thanks to the work of the charity - that is no longer the case and access to health care and maternal mortality rates are improving.
Students attending that seminar were invited to come up with one word that they felt reflected the inspirational nursing work done by “Nurses Reaching Out.’ They wrote their chosen word in wool, in their chosen language, reflecting the diversity of our students and the project - reflecting  this years International Nurse Day theme: a truly inclusive “Health For All.” 


Our invitation for this year’s competition is for writers working with written text to submit 100 words maximum, in any format (e.g. poetry/fiction/reportage etc), which must use at least one of the student's words, (see below and can be viewed HERE). The theme of the competition is ‘health for all,’ and your work should mention either knitting, or another aspect of the work of the NRO charity shown on their website. 

Send your written work in an email to collectconnect4@gmail.com by 8th May 2019

A prize of £50 will be awarded the best entry, judged by a panel including Michelle, KU nursing students and the Knitters. The written pieces will be exhibited at the Art of Caring exhibition at St George's Hospital, Tooting and at St Pancras Hospital in 2019. A selection will also appear in a limited edition chapbook.

Student's Words (language/translation/author)

Love (English)
Rudo (unknown)
Mommy (English)
Comfort  (English)
Joy (English)
together (English)
Comfort  (English)  by Tayo Oke
LOVE (English)  by Kimmone Shain
Bambino (Italian) baby by Jacinta Tsitsidzashe Kanengoni
10 Smiling (English)  

11 Care (English)
12 Life (English)  by Mercy Ewieke
13 help (English)
14 WARMTH (English)
15 Care (English)
16 Upendo (Kiswahili) Love by Esther Wangonde
17 Toto (unknown)
18 heart (English)
19 Sunshine (English)  by James
20 Purl (English) by Karen

21 Wool (English)  by Charnate Lewis
23 Cherish (English)  by Zoe Hoons
24 Nurture (English)  by Sarah Haines
25 Apwoyo (Acholi) Thank you by Alessandra Cerri
26 Unify (English)  by Ruby Mae Harris-Stewart
27 Gift (English)
28 Hope (English)
29 Comfort (English)  by Lucy Walsh
30 Bebe (French) Baby 

31 newborn (English)
32 OMO (Yoruba) Child
33 Toriro (Shona/Zimbabwe) Hope by Tapiwa Sahendo
34 Pamoja (Swahili) Together by Mulumba Kapami
35 Growth (English)  by Rachel Tettey
36 Love (Nepalese and Englsih)
37 IKIGAI (Japanese)
38 NIAMASTE (Nepalese) Hello
39 Lou (Ugandian) Mother by Whitney Soutier
40 Guarded (English)  by Mabinty Ann-Marie Sesay

41 Embellish (English)  by Fabienne Zoucouba
42 Webalenyo (Luganda) Thank you
43 (see image) (Arabic) Health
44 Kushi (Urdu) Happiness
45 Tot (English)
46 WIAOO (Nigerian) Thank you
47 Comfort (English)  by Ellen Kateya
48 Aye (Yoruba) life
49 Care (English)  by Paul
50 Comfort (English)  

51 Hope (English)
52 Movement (English)
53 Welfare (English)  by Gloria Kabati
54 Wholeness (English)
55 Caafimaad (Somali) Health by Faisa
56 Care (English)
57 Livity (Rastafarian) Everliving Living by Kryst-Ann
58 Creacion (Spanish) Creation by Michelle Moya
59 Warmth (English)  
60 Santaie (Jersey-French) Health

61 Change (English)
62 (see image) (Unknown) Art and Tradition
63 (see image) (Tamil) Mum by Niruja Selvanesan
64 (see image) (Arabic) Love by Arysha Qadeer
65 Rapport (English)
66 Compassion (English)  by Rachel Sullivan
67 Community (English)  by Jessica Lewsey
68 Mort (French) Death by William Annis
69 Suubi (Aluganda) Hope
70 Warmth (English)  

71 Gift (English)
72 Joy (English)
73 Baby (English)  by Michelle
74 Mahal (Filipino) Love by Silvani Buccat
75 Eweganda (English)  by Jack Sherry
76 humanity (English)  by Vivien Clarke
77 Care (English)
78 Warm (English)  by Deepi Jayachandran
79 Cwtch (Welsh) Hug/Cuddle by Lloyd Morgan
80 Peace (English)  by Rachel Childs

81 Snug (English)  by Joanne Calver
82 Joy (English)  by Naomi Mills
83 Comfort (English)  by Louise
84 Kindness (English)  by Orlanda Swallow
85 Magic (English)
86 Comfort  (English)  by Kate Habers
87 Chance (English)  by Louise Galley
88 Building (English)
89 Christmas (English)  by Nikki Urmila
90 Love (English)  by Vito Erasmo Cassandro

91 Zest (English)
92 Behandlingsret (Norwegian) The right to receive treatment by Anna Agnette Back
93 Kind  (English)  
94 Rodzina (Polish) Family by Bogusia Redford
95 Gift (English)  by Miriam Cima
96 Umul (Somali) Noun - a woman who has recently given birth
97 Mabuhay (Filipino) Long Live by K1612863
98 Cosy (English)  by Molly Rasmussen
99 Maa (Urdu) Mother
100 Nurture (English)  by Fran Eaton

101 Support (English)  by Raman Sharma
102 zestasiĆ” (Greek) warmth by Erini Singk
103 Amor (Portuguese) Love by Karla Lawanda
104 Generous (English)
105 baby (English)  by Louise Congress
106 Small (English)
107 Share (English)  by Reema
108 Love (English)  by Kelly Lleigh

Thursday, 10 January 2019

The Art of Caring 2019 - Submissions Open

Now in its 5th year The Art of Caring is needed more than ever to show support for Nurses, Carers, and the NHS. This is your chance to exhibit an artwork that demonstrates your passion for this theme. If this is your first time then check out Anna Bowman's documentary film about last year's exhibition HERE.

The Art of Caring is split into two clear exhibitions.
The first is at St George's Hospital (May 2019) where printed postcards of your artwork are displayed on the walls of the hospital to help celebrate International Nurses Day. This is an inclusive exhibition.
The second is at St Pancras Hospital (July - October 2019) and uses a mixture of original artworks and printed postcards. Works will be selected by the Arts Project curators Peter Herbert and Elaine Harper-Gay.

It is Free to enter.
Send up to 3 jpeg images at an A6 size to collectconnect4@gmail.com

We are looking for artworks about Care and/or Caring but also consider the theme for International Nurses Day this year..... Health for All.

You will receive a confirmation email within 7 days with your catalogue/exhibition numbers.
Before the exhibition we will print 2 postcards of each of your artworks. One copy will be sent to you and the other will be exhibited at St George's Hospital, Tooting, UK in May, 2019.

For the full details about how to submit your work visit our SUBMIT page.

Deadline for submissions is 7th April 2019
(We may close early if all 400 exhibition spaces are filled)

Alban Low, Bryan Benge, Dean Reddick and Stuart Simler

The exhibition is once again kindly supported by Supported by Kingston University and St George's, University of London

Thursday, 25 October 2018

Art of Caring documentary film 2018

Thank you to everyone who made this year's Art of Caring such a success. We closed the exhibition last week at St Pancras Hospital with a screening of Anna Bowman's wonderful film. The Art of Caring is a special exhibition, its inclusive ideals represent the special contribution that artists, nurses, carers and the NHS bring to our communities.

The film includes Interviews with artists and music and entertainment from the Opening Night of The Art of Caring exhibition at St Pancras Hospital's Gallery. For the last three years Peter Herbert, the Gallery's Curator and Manager, and his team have worked with artist and curator Alban Low to create a unique exhibition celebrating nursing and the NHS. The St Pancras exhibition builds on Alban Low's open submission and exhibition of postcards of art work, shown at St George's Hospital, Tooting. Artists interviewed in the film include Chris Bird, Sara Bowman, Peter Herbert, Alban Low, Chloe Wing, Susie Mendelsson, Elaine Harper-Gay, residents at Stacey Street Nursing Home, Danny Mooney and Lily Mooney. Opening Night music by Bee Ororo, Camden and Islington NHS Choir and Lucinda Sieger

Saturday, 4 August 2018

Art of Caring at St Pancras Hospital (until 18th October 2018)

The ART OF CARING exhibition opened with strength and passion with more than 150 guests greeting the unveiling of consistently strong artworks at St Pancras Hospital. On show was original work from 30 artists as well as postcard art from around 100 worldwide artists.

The Art of Caring has grown over its 3 years at St Pancras and is now one of the cornerstones of the gallery's exciting yearly schedule. 2018 offered us a glimpse of political awareness and tender moments of reflection. Elaine Harper Gay's triptych of pencil drawings reflecting on the powerful faces of the men who shape our global health. Contrasts this with the work of our youngest artist Lily Mooney who drew inspiration from the power of mermaids, and you'll understand what a brilliantly eclectic exhibition this is. 

On the stage we heard the voices of the C&I NHS Choir who sung beautiful songs including the seminal Lean On Me. Our guest singers Lucinda Sieger and Bee Ororo  wowed the audience with songs of love and hope including a rousing Tom Waites cover song. Guest speakers were Caroline Harris-Birtles, Andrew Machin and Paul Newcombe. Another lively, entertaining and inspired opening night in the gallery. 

Please do visit this wonderful collection of art. The exhibition runs Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm until Thursday 18/10/18 when the evening will include the premiere screening of Anna Bowman's new short film about the Art Of Caring. And remember to check out our suspended and mobile tennis installation Anyone for tennis? with sketches of players by Alban Low. You'll want to pick up a racquet and throw a ball or two in the air.

For more photos please click HERE.

Wednesday, 4 July 2018

NHS 70th Birthday Art Exhibition at St George's Hospital

The National Health Service is turning 70 on 5 July 2018. We want to celebrate the achievements of one of the nation’s most loved institutions, to show our appreciation of the vital role the service plays in our lives, and to recognise and thank the extraordinary NHS staff – the everyday heroes – who are there to guide, support and care for us, day in, day out. 

St George's Hospital in London have asked us to put on a special Art of Caring exhibition in their gallery space to help celebrate the 70th birthday of the NHS. The exhibition charts the history of the Art of Caring throughout its brief history (only 4 years!) and showcases some of the written and pictorial contributions from artists in 2018. Come and see for yourself from the 5th - 22nd July in the gallery space in Ingredients Restaurant, Lanesborough Wing, St George Hospital, London, SW17 0QT.

This year for the Art of Caring we wanted to mark the NHS' birthday with awards for both Art and Writing. The prizes for these awards have been generously donated by the staff at the Faculty of Health, Social Care, and Education at Kingston University and St George's, University of London. We're excited to announce that Danny Mooney is the winner of the Art Prize and Latoya Igbinosun the Writing Prize. 

Danny Mooney is a highly respected artist living and working in Hastings,  http://www.dannymooney.pictures/. Although Danny has prosopagnosia (facial blindness), in the studio he draws and paints people. "Making images of people helps me remember them," he says. "Making images that other people can recognise increases the level of interest and difficulty." He recognises people by how they move. "I can only make a recognisable image of someone if they are animated." Mooney sees his work as wall mounted sculpture, with paint as the medium. The physicality and texture of the paint is key. For the last five years he has been painting every day on his iPad. These are always from life, and usually of the sea. "I love technology and painting on the iPad is like having my sketch book and all my colours with me all the time." Danny Mooney studied at Goldsmiths and London Guildhall University in London. Mooney’s work has been exhibited in the UK and America and is represented in collections in the UK, America, Switzerland, Japan and China

Latoya Igbinosun is currently studying Adult Nursing at Kingston University and St George's, University of London.

Here at the Art of Caring we are also publishing a new book to accompany our bestselling 2016 chapbook Resilience. Health is a Human Right is 16 page colouring book published by Sampson Low Ltd. Over 200 nursing students from Kingston University and St George’s University of London tapped into their creative juices to produce inspirational writing on the 2018 International Nurses’ Day theme ‘A Voice to Lead: Health is a Human Right’.

Visiting Professor Karen Norman introduced this year’s Art of Caring writing competition by inviting participants to create an ‘aphorism' on the IND theme. An ‘aphorism’ historically refers to the medical rules written by Hippocrates. Nowadays, it’s defined as ‘a concise expression of doctrine or principle of any generally accepted truth conveyed in a pithy, memorable statement.’ A good example is Florence Nightingale’s famous aphorism: ‘Hospitals should do the sick no harm.’ Here we present 27 written works chosen by the Kingston University Nursing Society in this special chapbook. Buy your copy at https://sampsonlow.co/

The Art of Caring is an inclusive art exhibition that celebrates the role of nurses and carers on International Nurses’ Day (12th May) each year. The first Art of Caring was held at The Rose Theatre, Kingston-upon-Thames in 2015 and featured 252 artworks from 133 artists. The exhibition was the idea of Kingston University Nursing Society, faculty staff members, visiting professors, the faculty’s artist-in-residence Alban Low and the Head of Nursing at Kingston and St George’s, University of London Dr Julia Gale. 

Each year artists of all ages, skills and backgrounds are invited to submit work on the International Nurses’ Day theme and to consider the exhibition’s recurring concepts of Caring and Care. Submission is free, and no work is rejected. Each artwork is printed as a postcard and displayed on the wall. A copy of the postcard is sent to each artist wherever they live around the world. 

In 2016 the exhibition expanded to include written submissions in the form of a three line poem in the tradition of Japanese haikus. These were printed onto prescription sheets and displayed once again at The Rose Theatre gallery. The Art of Caring was also exhibited at St Pancras Hospital in 2016 with a mixture of original and postcard art on display. Each year since then the exhibition has travelled to St Pancras Hospital under the guidance of curators Peter Herbert and Elaine Harper-Gay. It is a fabulous opportunity to see the work afresh amongst this vibrant artistic community.

St George’s Hospital became a new home for the Art of Caring in 2017. For two weeks a busy corridor in the Atkinson Morley Wing was transformed into an art gallery. The exhibition was visited by the Chief Nursing Officer for England and Executive Director at NHS England Professor Jane Cummings. It proved to be very popular with nurses and service users alike. Over 4 years the Art of Caring has exhibited over 1180 paintings, drawings, collages, photographs, haikus, poems, aphorisms and sculptures. In the year of the NHS’ 70th birthday the Art of Caring still retains its popularity and inclusive ideals.