“Giraffe City” is a whimsical city of my imagination, made from sewing thread and embroidery floss, which will hang as a large installation (5 feet x 11.5 feet) outside of the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Children’s Hospital Colorado. My daughter, Sylvia, spent 6 days in the PICU after the initial treatment of her craniopharyngioma brain tumor at age 2. During those days and our many visits since, we have appreciated the incredible care she’s received, and also the art that supports an atmosphere that is warm and fun for kids. As an artist and a parent, I felt I could make a unique contribution to acknowledge the wonderful care Sylvia has received, and hopefully bring joy to many kids who are treated at Children’s Hospital Colorado.
Why Giraffe City?
After her initial MRI, Sylvia’s Dad and I gave her a little stuffed giraffe for being so brave. Knowing that this appointment was going to be the first of countless appointments and days spent at the hospital we asked Sylvia if she would like to give it a special name. At the age of 2, she looked at the giraffe and she looked at us and decided she would like to call it Giraffe City. And that is what we have called Children’s ever since. Giving the hospital a more playful name has helped lighten the experience of facing so many health challenges and hard days. While Sylvia recovered from her brain surgery we spent many hours wandering the halls looking at the art throughout the hospital, noting how the addition of art throughout the hospital made the experience feel much more natural and welcoming. Being an artist and having spent so much time at Children’s working with many wonderful doctors and nurses, I wanted to create something that would express my appreciation of these amazing people and of my daughter. It would need to be a work of art that made children and their parents smile when they saw it.
I have put together this Kickstarter campaign to help bring “Giraffe City” to life. “Giraffe City” is an organic city landscape housing seven giraffes. The giraffes represented are Sylvia’s neurosurgeon, endocrinologist, ophthalmologist, neuro-oncologist, radiologist, head nurse from her radiation treatments, and of course Sylvia. Each giraffe will have an identifying marker, whether it’s her neurosurgeon’s cowboy boots, or her radiologist’s very fun kid friendly ties. I am using free form embroidery over the top of brightly colored embroidery floss to bring "Giraffe City" into being.
In progress images of "Giraffe City"