The Art of Healing

When St. Mary’s planned its new Epworth Crossing outpatient center, it was designed to heal mind, body, and spirit. Since research has shown that environmental factors like light, color, and artwork can have a significant impact on stress levels, great care was taken to make the patient experience as positive as possible.

The artwork inside St. Mary’s Epworth Crossing, a 44,000-square-foot facility, was selected by Begley Art Source, a division of the Evansville Museum Shop of the Evansville Museum of Arts, History and Science. The Begley Art Source specializes in custom artwork for site-specific projects in addition to museum curatorial services, and chose 23 artists to feature at Epworth Crossing.

“We knew that the artwork selection was critical to the overall look and feel of the facility,” says Anne Johnston, director of Epworth Crossing. “We selected artwork that would provide color and life and also support the healing environment. We hoped that the artwork would resonate on some level with every person in the facility.”

Of the 23 commissioned artists, 11 were local. Those local artists are Kristen Wilkens, Lenny Dowhie, John and Donna Hendricks, Larry and Karen Hampton, Joycelyn Todisco, Alex Morgan, Tara Blessinger, Jordan Barclay, and Amy Musia. A number of photography pieces were placed in the corridors of the Clinic area. The photographers were local professionals who provided nature imagery from the region. All of the art is now on display at St. Mary’s Epworth Crossing.

Local artist Karen Hampton spent more than 300 quilting hours on her luminescent digital fiber art piece — not including design time. Hampton, who collaborated with her husband Larry, used nature’s elements of water, rocks, leaves, trees, gardens, and ponds with an emphasis on water to produce a soothing mood in the piece, titled “Tranquility.” The Hamptons’ tapestry is in the waiting room of the new and expanded Breast Center.

Fellow artist Amy Musia was asked to produce art that would be placed outside of a life-changing room for patients — a room where one may learn that he or she has cancer. Musia wanted to provide a piece, entitled “Zen,” that can transcend the patient away from the current situation for a moment.

“Studies have shown that healthcare facilities with art inside them may cut the healing time in half for the patients,” says Musia.

For more information about the artwork at St. Mary’s Epworth Crossing, call The Begley Art Source at 812-402-2180 or visit

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