A Nature Trail in an Unexpected Place

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Jason Bruges Studio has completed a unique—life-changing is more like it—project for Great Ormond Street Hospital in London. The brief was to design and install a ‘distraction artwork’ that helps create a calming yet engaging route for the patient’s arrival at the anaesthetic room, right before having surgery. Inspiration came …

new york branding sports graphic design agency

Jason Bruges Studio has completed a unique—life-changing is more like it—project for Great Ormond Street Hospital in London.

The brief was to design and install a ‘distraction artwork’ that helps create a calming yet engaging route for the patient’s arrival at the anaesthetic room, right before having surgery. Inspiration came from the idea of viewing the patient journey as a ‘Nature Trail’, where the hospital walls become the natural canvas, with digital look out points that reveal the various ‘forest creatures,’ including horses, deer, hedgehogs, birds and frogs, to the passerby.

“The journey to the operating room is rarely a pleasant one. The squeak of trolley wheels on linoleum, the glare of fluorescent lights, the smell of disinfectant in the air. But the new installation at Great Ormond Street children’s hospital has transformed this clinical experience into something close to drifting through a magical glade.” writes Oliver Wainwright in his blog at theguardian.com

The work, which covers the corridor walls, has two main elements: 70 integrated LED panels (72,000 LEDs in total) and bespoke graphic wallpaper. The LEDs are embedded into the wall at various heights in order to be accessible to varying eye levels of the patients, aged newborn to 16, and the different viewpoints, from wheelchairs and beds to standing. Abstracted ‘animal movements’ are recreated along these digital surfaces as interactive animated patterns of light, which reveal themselves through the trees and foliage of the forest.

“The benefit of taking this kind of approach to distraction is a really positive experience for children and their families,” says Natalie Robinson, deputy director of redevelopment at the hospital. The scheme has already had such a positive effect on patients, that it is being extended across the rest of the walls by 2017.

Still wondering about the value of design, anyone?

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