Arts & Healing at Inova Schar Cancer Institute

The dedication of the Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery at the Inova Schar Cancer Institute in Fairfax, VA took place Monday, July 8.

artwork collection glass

Inova Schar Cancer Institute located at 8081 Innovation Park Drive, Fairfax, VA 22031

The Arts & Healing Program at the Inova Schar Cancer Institute, a department of Inova Fairfax Hospital, is a collaboration with the Smith Center for Healing and the Arts, and uses art in its many forms to help support people in treatment and recovery and their loved ones. This innovative program includes a robust permanent art collection and ongoing exhibitions, performing arts events, and other workshops.

Opening dedication ceremony of the Arts & Healing program at the Inova Schar Cancer Institute.

Opening dedication ceremony of the Arts & Healing program at the Inova Schar Cancer Institute.

The Arts & Healing Program is a resource for families, loved ones and the community to support Inova Schar’s core mission and philosophy to provide patient-centered care. New acquisitions and special site-specific artworks many DC area artists – including WGS’ Michael Janis, Tim Tate, and Allegra Marquart are in the new collection as well as works by Foon Sham, Valerie Theberge, Alan Binstock, Wendy Ross, and Susan Hostetler. 

Artists Alan Binstock and Valerie Theberge with Arts Director Shanti Norris.

Artists Alan Binstock and Valerie Theberge with Arts Director Shanti Norris.

 

Sculpture by Foon Sham at the new Inova Schar Cancer Institute in Fairfax, VA.

Sculpture by Foon Sham at the new Inova Schar Cancer Institute in Fairfax, VA.

The Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery at Inova Schar Cancer Institute is dedicated to exhibiting fine art that explores the innate connection between healing and creativity. Through a rotating exhibition schedule, the gallery features contemporary artists that address a diversity of significant themes, including spirituality, social change, multiculturalism, health, environmentalism and community.

One of the large commissioned artworks is a site-specific installation work by glass sculptor Michael Janis. The Washington Glass School blog has asked Michael to outline the work’s meanings and the processes he used to create the monumental recognition wall.

 

Dwight Schar Recognition Wall at Inova Schar Cancer Institute

Dwight Schar Recognition Wall at Inova Schar Cancer Institute

Inspired by the story of Dwight Schar, founder and chairman of homebuilding and mortgage giant NVR, and donation by he and his wife to develop the cancer research institute that now bears their names, I worked at creating glass pieces that have both visual and spatial depth. Mr Schar’s mother died very young, lacking of good healthcare, and Mr Schar saw the creation of a cancer center and affording them the equipment and facilities needed to advance their treatments and research as a way to repay the community that supported his home building company.

Artist Michael Janis talks to the tour group about his unusual glass technique.

Artist Michael Janis talks to the tour group about his unusual glass technique.

 

The artwork installation is a tribute to his history and largesse. A rendering of Dwight Schar made of crushed glass powder overlaps cast glass squares that depict references homes and community, as well as the advancements that science and research could bring to the world. In the center of the artwork installation, cancer awareness ribbons are the focal point, in its natural clear state, allowing all symbolic cancer awareness colors to be seen within. The end framing panels are a special iridescent glass that has many colors that shift intensity depending on the viewer perspective.

Inova Schar Center made in kiln-cast glass.

Inova Schar Cancer Institute fired in kiln-cast glass.

The central portrait of Mr Schar is made from crushed black glass powder. The fine powder was carefully manipulated with scalpel and brushes to form the detailed likeness and took many hours and kiln firings to complete. 

The clear glass ribbons have become the symbol of the new Inova Schar Institute – and Washington Glass School was later commissioned to make smaller versions of the ribbons as commemorative sculptures for valued benefactors and volunteers to the new Cancer Center. inova.schar.glass.ribbon.award

Lisa Ellis receives recognition for her work in creating the arts program at Inova Schar Institute.

Lisa Ellis receives recognition for her work in creating the arts program at Inova Schar Institute.

John Henderson at DC’s "Community of Hope" Collection

John Henderson “Kadima” fused glass

Washington Glass School Resident Artist John Hendersonrecently had a glass artwork panel acquired by Community of Hope, a non-profit organization located in Washington D.C. For 33 years, Community of Hope has provided hope and stability to low-income and homeless adults and children in DC. This acquisition was facilitated by Fitzgerald Fine Arts, an art consulting firm headed by Lillian Fitzgerald.

John Henderson began his artistic studies at the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, at Harvard University. John’s artistic journey has taken him through printmaking, water colors, stained glass, metal sculpture, and finally kilnformed glass.

John Henderson

Said John about his glass artwork:“I use glass as my medium because of its translucency and reflective qualities…In working with glass, my focus is on shape, form, texture and color…I use many different materials mixed with glass, yet glass is the dominated focus in all its various applications and techniques.”

“In creating this visual transparency; abstracting images, symbols and text, my work invokes a spiritual awareness and connection to the past. My aesthetic philosophy is an exploration and extension of my cultural identity. I am reclaiming and reconciling the past, with the present, in order to move forward.”

The title of the triptych piece is “Kadima”. Kadima means “Forward” in Hebrew.  The medium is fused glass and each panel measures 8″x10″.

Congratulations John!

The Process: Shady Grove Hospital Glass Artwork

Earlier, the blog had posted about the commission of artwork from Washington Glass Studio to be installed in the chapel in Shady Grove Hospital’s new Aqualino Cancer Care center. The artwork was recently installed – here is a look at the process:

Original design sketch

After the concept design, dimensions and glass techniques proposed was approved, the Washington Glass Studio team worked at getting the glass underway.
First, glass of the right size was needed. The glass triptych panels were 5′-0″ long, much larger than the glass we had in the studio. Getting large shipments of glass and then (successfully) cutting the glass would be a project into themselves!

Erwin Timmers and Tim Tate receiving the large pane of sheet glass.

The process of cutting such a large sheet of glass involved many from the studio – just to keep the score line straight.

The glass is larger than the pair of work tables.


Erwin Timmers preps the glass for cutting.
The cutting crew: L-R Erwin Timmers, Michael Janis, Audrey Wilson.

After the glass is cut and cleaned, work inside the kilns proceeds. Audrey Wilson set beds of dry sifted plaster within the large kilns, and began creating the molds the glass would be melted into.

Audrey working on the glass mold that is set up in the kiln.

After firing, annealing and cooling the glass panels, the edges needed to be ground and polished smooth – a noisy messy job. 

Audrey takes to working outdoors to do the wet grinding.

Now the glass is ready for the site. Tim and Erwin traveled to the new cancer facility to install the glass panels into the steel slots that were previously set into a concrete plinth. The surrounding area to the glass panels will incorporate a rock garden.

Erwin Timmers and Tim Tate being installing the panels into the steel framework.
Artists Tim Tate and Erwin Timmers stop for a chat about the glass artwork.
The finished work from inside the Aqualino Cancer Center chapel.

 Adventist Healthcare’s executive director of Cancer Care Services sent a note about the just installed artwork – she wrote to the Shady Grove Art Consultant Lillian Fitzgerald: “… I was in the ACC today and the whole stone and glass took my breath.  The glass is the most beautiful work I have ever seen.  Thank you for your vision...

A great note to end the story of the process of the artwork!

Glass Artwork for Shady Grove Hospital

The Washington Glass Studio was commissioned to make cast glass artwork for the chapel at the Shady Grove Hospital. Working with the art consultant – Fitzgerald Fine Arts – the artwork involves integration of glass with a large stone boulder. The artwork anchors and defines the interior chapel of the new Aquilino Cancer Center, now under construction in Rockville, MD.

The stonework required a setting bed and the glass framework was mounted into the concrete. The 5′-0″ H glass panels will cantilever out of steel frame behind the stonework, creating a dimensional screen to the meditative room.  The artwork team comes to the Glass Studio for a final review of the dimensions, process and schedule.

(L-R) Don Sebastian, Erwin Timmers, Lillian Fitzgerald and Erica Kemper review the design documents of the 5′-0″H cast glass panels.
Erwin Timmers describes the cast glass process, and discusses color options.
The design calls for bas-relief leaves cascading around the stone element.

Erwin Timmers said of the artwork concept: “The flowing cast glass leaves create a calming vista and reinforce a sense of transformation. Aided by the almost meditative quality of translucent cast glass, the viewer might contemplate healing visions of nature.”

More will be posted as the glass panels start being set up in the kilns!

Hennessey and Hassan Opening @ NIH

>



Sean Hennessey / Rania Hassan


Washington Glass School Artists Sean Hennessey and Rania Hassan both have their artwork on exhibit at the National Institutes of Health [NIH] in Bethesda, Maryland. Their evocative & tactile artwork will be on display through July 2 in the Clinical Research Center Galleries in the Mark O. Hatfield NIH Clinical Center, Building 10.




National Institutes of Health [NIH]

Clinical Research Center Galleries

Mark O. Hatfield Clinical Research Center, Building 10

May 7–July 2, 2010

9000 Rockville Pike Bethesda, Maryland 20814

Click here for map

Click here for visitor information *

*NIH is accessible 24 hours a day, everyday, but it is a secure facility, and as such, there are some access procedures visitors will go through.

Weekends and evenings are the best time to visit.

On the weekends, visitors need to use the delivery entrance on Rockville Pike, and on weekdays, the visitors entrance.