Southern Illinois Healthcare’s new Cancer Center is a little more than a month away from officially opening its doors, but the facility is nearly complete – with pieces from local artists already on display.
Glass artist Jan Thomas and her husband Cameron Smith created “Shawnee Garden,” which greets patients and their families as they walk through the front door of the Center.
“A garden seemed like a very good subject for this place, it’s upbeat, it’s cheerful. It’s hopeful, and bright-colored. People are going to come in here with some pretty heavy loads in their heart, so maybe it’ll lift them up a little bit.”
SIH System Director for Cancer Care Services Jennifer Badiu says the artwork and design of the facility are meant to help create a peaceful environment for the people going through treatment.
“They also have less stress, and that can really weigh on your system. Sometimes that can be a trigger to other issues that may create problems throughout your treatment.”
Badiu says studies have shown that having a peaceful environment helps with healing. She says adding the pieces from local artists will help in the overall care of patients from all over the region.
“Really, the focus is about the patient. Healing, promoting a relaxing, tranquil environment for them to heal.”
Mixed Media Artist Karen Linduska of Carbondale created "Marshland" over a span of several months. She says it was inspired by a pond near her home. It depicts white egrets, flowers, water, stones and more - in a combination of fabrics and other materials.
“So I think that will help anybody that’s here for whatever, you know, if they’re with somebody, or if they’re actually getting treatment. And I hope that this piece helps to give them tranquility.”
SIH worked with Carbondale Community Arts and other groups in its call for local artwork. Dozens of photographs, paintings, quilts, and other pieces are on display throughout the Cancer Center in Carterville.