Integrated art: issues in the design of healthcare facilities

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Integrated art: issues in the design of healthcare facilities event took place on Thursday 16 November 2006 at the Building Centre Trust, 26 Store Street, London, from 6.00pm to 8.30pm. It was presented by London Arts in Health Forum in association with Architects for Health.

This event was a presentation on recent healthcare projects, which integrated different art forms into their design highlighting the relationship between the artists and architects in the design process, its development and completion. The idea was to discuss the increasing integration of art in healthcare architecture and the issues this can raise.

London Arts in Health Forum is a membership organisation for health and arts professionals and health-related organizations, which works to promote and support arts in health activity across London and nationally.

The Forum’s primary activity is the sharing of expertise, experience, information and ideas face-to-face, on paper and online.

The organisation is free to join and offers regular events, a monthly newsletter, training sessions and advice and information for artists, architects, clinical staff and anyone with an interest in arts in health.

The Event was chaired by

  • Susan Francis, Architectural Advisor to the Future Healthcare Network of the NHS Confederation.Susan is architectural advisor to the FHN (Future Healthcare Network) at the NHS Confederation. FHN facilitates a learning network for Trusts engaged in major capital developments for hospital, primary care and mental health services. Susan works closely with the Department of Health, chairing the Design Review Panels for major capital schemes and developing various policy initiatives underpinning the design evaluation process.FHN has developed a programme entitled ‘Optimising Design’ exploring the implications of modernising service delivery on the physical design of healthcare buildings. Further events and briefings have focused on ‘Futureproofing design’, understanding the ‘Lean Hospital’, and the role of health in developing Sustainable Communities.

    Trained as an architect, Susan has worked as an academic developing research, presentations, publications and postgraduate training in this specialised field for over 17 years. Susan has recently presented at International conferences and events in Netherlands, Germany, Norway, France, Dubai as well as the UK.

Moorfields International Children’s Eye Centre


  • Sunand Prasad of Penoyre and Prasad, lead architect on the projectSunand is President Elect of the Royal Institute of British Architects and a founder partner of Penoyre & Prasad, an architectural practice known for designing a diverse range of award winning buildings.He was one of the founding Commissioners of UK Government’s Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment, serving from 1999-2006. Amongst his contributions to CABE were launching the Enabling Programme, and guiding the Skills Programme. He established the Constructive Change group at the RIBA and played a leading role in the development of Design Quality Indicators for the Construction Industry Council. He is the RIBA Vice President for Policy and Strategy and a member of the Institute’s Council and Board. He will serve as President 2007-2009.

    Sunand has contributed to many books and publications and continues a long-term involvement in Architectural Education. He lives in London with his family in a house designed and built together with friends.

  • Isabel Vasseur of ArtOffice, the consultancy which advised on the projectIsabel, Director of ArtOffice, from 1980 to 1986 pioneered the Public Art movement in the UK, acting as agent for Eastern Arts encouraging and advising on the use of the Arts Council’s Works of Art in Public Places funding scheme. During this time, she was also responsible for residencies, collections, loan schemes and policymaking.From 1986 to 1990, Vasseur was Visual Arts Co-coordinator for both the Glasgow Garden Festival and the National Garden Festival in Gateshead, orchestrating over 150 commissions, fundraising and initiating performance and education programmes. In parallel to these activities, the consultancy service was formed which has provided advice on Public Art strategy and commissions management to the public and private sectors.

    Vasseur also acted as Senior Visual Arts Officer for the Arts Council of Great Britain from 1990 to 1991, where she edited the publication A Percent for Art: A Review which covered public art practice worldwide. In 1992, Isabel Vasseur initiated, planned and curated Lux Europae, an international citywide exhibition of light installations in Edinburgh to coincide with the European Summit.

    ArtOffice undertakes research, provides reports and creates publications on subjects relating to the place of art in contemporary urban and rural developments.

  • Alison Turnbull, the artist who worked with Penoyre & Prasad on the façadeAlison Turnbull, an established British artist, has collaborated with a number of architectural practices and her paintings are included in various public and private collections, including The Arts Council, The British Council and Deutsche Bank, London.

Gloucestershire Royal Hospital


  • Claudia Bloom of Avanti
  • Jane Willis of Willis Newson, the consultants responsible for the Leading the Way project of integrated art.Jane Willis is a creative thinker able to combine visioning, strategic planning and hands-on delivery to give life to projects and ideas.Having gained a degree in English Literature from Somerville College, Oxford University, she worked as a journalist and communications consultant before pursuing a career in the arts. She particularly enjoys working in non-arts settings. As well as hospitals, she has led projects in community, schools and corporate settings.

    Jane has been a key player in the development of the arts and health field since 1994 when she set up Vital Arts and led its development to a thriving hospital arts programme.

    Jane has lectured and taught on the subject of public art and arts in healthcare in this country and abroad. In 1998 she received a grant to research arts in healthcare programmes across the USA. She travelled the East and West coasts, visiting 32 hospital arts programmes. In 2004 she was invited to Taiwan where she met artists and Government officials tasked with implementing the country’s percent for art policy.

    Jane is currently a Trustee of Arts and Health South West.

    In 2001 Jane set up Willis Newson, a Bristol-based arts consultancy specialising in healthcare and the built environment, working with health, community and corporate clients across the UK to devise and deliver public art projects, artists-in-residence schemes and arts-in-hospitals programmes. While much of its work is concerned with enhancing physical spaces, it believes that the arts can be a powerful tool in unlocking both individual and community potential. Collaboration and participation are at the heart of its work, with projects designed to actively engage and involve local communities.


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