ARCH Design, Artwork & Framing
Your firms role on the project : ARCH Design, Artwork & Framing provided art consulting, acquisition, framing and installation for over 1,000 artworks, including more than five dozen original pieces, for Barnes-Jewish Parkview Tower in St. Louis, MO. Parkview Tower is a new inpatient tower at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and part of the Washington University Medical Center (WUMC) Campus Renewal Project.
Project Mission and Vision
Park View Tower stands at the crossroads of a dynamic urban neighborhood and Forest Park, a St. Louis destination for nature and culture. Research in Evidence-Based Design (EBD) informed the decision to maximize park views in the private patient rooms, while the natural finishes reinforced the connection to the outdoors. BJC’s HealthCare's Architecture and Planning team tasked ARCH Design with providing artwork that not only celebrated nature, but also reflected the diversity of the surrounding community and, most importantly, the patient populations who are now being served at Barnes-Jewish Park View Tower.
ARCH Design devised a two-part strategy meant to appeal to varied tastes and experiences, while maximizing the potential of nature-based artwork to ease stress and promote healing. First, in order to provide patients, their families and caregivers with conversation pieces as they walked the halls together, the ARCH team suggested a travel theme for the corridor art. To lend additional focus, on each patient floor a series of nature photographs guides viewers on an imaginary road trip through a different region of the United States. With the idea of positive distraction in mind, ARCH’s consultants carefully selected landscape photographs that were composed so viewers could imagine themselves in the image. For example, one photograph represents a pair of feet propped up on a balcony overlooking a stunning vista, while another shows a hand holding a kite string and the expanse of the sky beyond. Feedback suggests that these images have fulfilled their purpose of inspiring conversation about memories of the past and dreams of the future.
The second part of the strategy also relates to the travel theme, but on a metaphorical level. For key areas, such as information desks, ARCH recommended original local art that showcased different styles and viewpoints. In this way, those interested could journey through varied artistic perspectives. For instance, the Mother’s Walk, a private corridor for women to walk while they are in labor, features a gallery of works by St. Louis artists that range from soothing to energizing to uplifting. To that end, Carol Carter’s watercolor of Tibetan prayer flags against a bright blue sky suggests hope for the future, while St. Louis artist Cbabi Bayoc’s painting of a parent swinging their child around in a park is delightful, aspirational image. Further, the figures’ linked arms resemble the St. Louis Arch, reinforcing the connection between the art, the hospital, and the diverse community it serves.
Research Used And Lessons Learned
The architects at HOK consulted with over 750 stakeholders, while BJC HealthCare's Architecture and Planning team held focus groups on art with patients and staff. Additionally, ARCH Design consulted with nurse advisors and operations managers. While the client is currently conducting research studies on the artwork, ARCH is incorporating the initial positive feedback from patients and staff into its concepts for Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital in the St. Louis suburb of Creve Coeur.
Links To Published Articles On The Project
- Two New Towers Enhance Care For Women, Infants, Cancer Patients on Washington University Medical Campus
- New tower expands, improves inpatient care for Siteman Cancer Center patients
- Family-friendly care for Barnes-Jewish, Children’s hospital patients
- Two New Towers Rise on Washington University Medical Campus
- New hospital towers will bring new mothers closer to critically ill infants, serve cancer patients