Louise drops in on Mrs Brown

Oxleas’ Deputy Head of Art Psychotherapy, Louise Smart, was invited to a reception in 10 Downing Street recently held for the charity Paintings in Hospitals. They aim to improve the environment of hospitals and other healthcare establishments by providing original works of art on loan. Sixty people attended the reception including the artist Anthony Gormley (famous for his giant sculpture ‘Angel of the North’), patrons and trustees of the charity and professionals who like Louise specialise in arts in healthcare.

“It was very exciting” said Louise. “I had to present my passport at the end of the street and go through an airport style metal detector. Then up the stairs past portraits of past prime ministers to one of the art filled state rooms boasting not one but two Turners.” There she met Prime Minister’s wife Sarah Brown and was impressed that she knew all about Oxleas. “I was able to talk to her about the latest arts in health and therapies work we have been undertaking and tell her about a research project we’re collaborating with Pictures in Hospitals on. I felt very reassured to know that Oxleas’ name is known and talked about at such events.”

The research project will see loaned pictures on the walls of health centres in Bexley and people will be encouraged to interact with the artwork. Staff will take part in phase one of the project and service users will join phase two later in the year.

For more information about Paintings in Hospitals, visit www.paintingsinhospitals.org.uk.

For information about the Bexley art project, contact Louise Smart on Louise.Smart@oxleas.nhs.uk

Photo caption

Deputy Head of Art Psychotherapy Louise Smart

Published on 28th January 2010