The Mexican artist Arantxa Ximena Rodríguez (AXR as she is also known) was selected to create a mural at the entrance to Lincoln Hospital located in the Bronx New York. Within 200+ applications, AXR along with ten other artists were selected and divided among ten different hospitals to create murals. The goal of the program was to use a collaborative creation process as a tool to build trust and commitment between hospitals and their communities, generate pride in the neighborhood, and reduce the stigma associated with hospitals through community building activities.
This open call was launched by the NYC Health + Hospitals Art in Medicine association, with the support of Laurie M. Tisch Illumination fund. Continuing the tradition established in the 1930s when the creation of hundreds of murals in New York City public hospitals was supported. This project will connect artists, members of the local community, and hospital staff to adorn hospitals with art and promote greater well-being in the neighborhood.
The project was formed in several stages. In one of the final stages, AXR presented 4 different proposals, of which the winner was a drawing that showed hands releasing a scroll surrounded by circles. The artist says that what she tried to show in the proposal is a kind of creation of the universe, where the hands that appear from the sides represent Mother Nature, God or the universe itself, creating everything that exists, since the circles contain all the primary and secondary
colors in different shades. In the middle of the design there is a banner that reads a quote by by Hippocrates, considered the father of medicine, that says “Wherever the art of medicine is loved, there is also a love for humanity.” The mural will be created for the sides of the escalators at the hospital entrance. In total it measures about 600 square feet. The artist took about a month and a half to finish the entire project. This would not have been possible without the help of several doctors, nurses, members of the Bronx community as well as several friends of the artist, who helped her with the creation of the mural at some stage.
The artist mentioned “This project means a lot to me, not only because of the fact that I am a Mexican artist creating a work in a public space in New York, but because my work can help change someone’s day, make people happy when passing by it. This project also helped me personally to get moving, after being in quarantine for months worried about what was going to happen to my future, it pulled me out of a depression. Just as this mural helped me personally heal, I hope that all the energy, love and dedication with which it was created reaches the hearts of people who need it too. ”
The inauguration will take place on Friday, November 20, 2020 at 2.30pm. At Lincoln Hospital in the Bronx New York.