Thursday, 6 December 2012

Lesley Whelan's Rainbow of Colour


Interiors & Lifestyle Futures member Lesley Whelan, a visual artist from Coventry, has produced a major piece of art for the new Marie Curie Hospice in the West Midlands.

The memories and stories of patients and staff are its inspiration. Painted on 16 panels, a Rainbow of Colour, captures the four seasons in flowers, plants and images from the natural world. It is the centrepiece of the reception area in the new hospice in Solihull.

Part of Lesley Whelan's Rainbow of Colour at the Marie Curie hospice, Solihull

“Every plant or flower that is represented is there for a reason,” says Lesley. “They remind patients and staff of people, places or significant occasions in their lives.

“One woman told me about the forget-me-nots she’d place in her hair as a child. Another spoke about picking bluebells in the woods when she was young and the wild flowers she used to see like cowslips and daisies.

“A gentleman also spoke about the poppies that grow on the drive of the hospice. He drew connections between their presence and how they thrive on battlefields where no other flowers will grow. Another woman said how the maple leaf would remind her of her brother in Canada.”

As well as collecting stories, Lesley encouraged patients, visitors and staff to draw plants and flowers that were meaningful to them. The pictures were then traced and projected on to soft boards, before being etched and painted.

Lesley collaborated with patients and staff, their memories & stories inspiring her work

Elizabeth Cottier, hospice manager, says, “It is a fantastic and beautiful work and it reflects patients’ and our staff’s ideas and experiences, which makes this work not only Lesley’s but also one that truly belongs to and is part of the hospice.”

For Lesley, the project has changed the way she works. She’s now planning to experiment with multiple panels and is keen to work more with elderly people, helping them to express their thoughts and feelings through making art.

Rainbow of Colour, captures the four seasons in flowers, plants and images
For more details about Lesley's works, contact her on 07762 139438 or info@lesleywhelan.co.uk.

Thanks to Lesley for the press release.