Designing better mental healthcare facilities

Artwork a ‘touchpoint in time’

Illustrator and reportage artist, Emily Thomas, has been working with CW+, the official charity of Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, as part of her residency at West Middlesex University Hospital, producing a collection of illustrations which capture and celebrate the workforce there.

Her work revolves around direct observation and discovery, and for this commission, she has been drawing staff at work across the hospital since October 2021, producing a large quantity of drawings which ‘capture the hospital’s daily workings, busy moments, calm moments, and many friendly conversations’. CW+ says she has built strong connections with staff, describing her drawings as ‘a touchpoint in time, reflecting the diverse workforce and community spirit of staff’.

The project forms part of a wider exhibition CW+ is developing ‘to mark the rich heritage’ of ‘West Mid’ as part of the hospital’s 100-year celebration funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. The display will become a permanent feature in the entrance, and along with Emily Thomas’s drawings, will reflect key moments of the hospital’s past, photographs, and future plans.

A recent graduate, Emily Thomas started working with CW+ and the Trust as a student through the charity’s partnership with University of the West Of England, and has previously been an artist in residence at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, creating artwork to capture the life of volunteers at there, exhibited as part of a CW+ ‘Arts in Health’ exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery.

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