Zoë Kazeil Brown had a straightforward goal when she created her ladybug painting to hang in the new emergency department of Nanaimo Regional General Hospital.
“It’s happy. I thought it would make people smile when they’re not feeling well,” said the eight-year-old Nanaimo artist.
Brown, a Grade 3 student at McGirr Elementary School, is one of 15 central Island artists whose paintings, photographs, carvings and ceramic works were selected to brighten the new ER which opened Oct. 1.
“Each piece of art displayed throughout the emergency department comes from local artists and is a reminder every day of why we come to work. The theme of inspiration is seen in each piece and will make you smile,” said Suzanne Fox, director, emergency service and trauma care at NRGH. “This beautiful facility is a true testament of being built by the community and for the community.”
Brown has been painting with her grandmother, Nanaimo artist Chris Kazeil, for four years, said her mom, Shauna Kazeil, clinical coordinator – pediatrics at NRGH.
“We decided to submit Zoë’s ladybug along with her grandma’s piece, Bollywood, as we thought it would be a really cool legacy if they were both accepted. We’re proud of both the talented artists in our family,” said Kazeil.
Other artists, whose works were chosen in a competition open to central Vancouver Island residents, include: Robert Adams – Old Duckbill Whiles Away the Afternoon; Frank Armich – Tree of Life; Deborah Daffe – Qualicum Beach; Yolanda Hailey – Cross-legged Driftwood; Gittan Klemestrud – Grounded; Nancy Marshall – Laughter is the Best Medicine; Liz McKnight – Gabriola View; Sheila Norgate – Fido; Michael Poyntz (prose)/ Craig Carmichel (photograph) – Redemption; Jackson Robertson – Whale; Sarah Catherine Shaw – On Board; William Stockman – Love Heals Too; and Woodlands Secondary pottery class – West Coast.
Photography in the psychiatric intensive care unit and in the psychiatric emergency services area was created by participants in the I SPY Photography Program.
The program recognizes art as an important medium for expression and serves as an avenue for recovery in the lives of many clients.
Showcasing their photographs celebrates their talent and works to challenge the stigma associated with mental illness.