The Moorfields arts committee unveiled a new art exhibition in the optometry corridor at Moorfields City Road site, displaying artistic work by Vanessa Bryson and Suse Nielebock.
The unveiling event included an address from the arts committee chair, Raj Das Bhaumik, a consultant ophthalmologist at Moorfields, and was joined by Moorfields consultant ophthalmologist Mariya Moosajee and arts committee members from across the trust. There was also some live musical entertainment kindly arranged by Friends of Moorfields volunteer Linda Vass.
The artists spoke about their work which is tactile and inspired by music. Artist Vanessa Bryson, said:
“In 2013 I became ill with an eye disease called band keratopathy. This caused me to lose vision in both eyes to the extent that I could not see a double decker bus until it was almost at the bus stop. I was treated at Moorfields for almost a year and received at least two eye surgeries there to remove the calcium deposits. Since the band keratopathy disappeared I have regained my sight with the help of scleral contact lenses since my corneas are now scarred.
“One of the odd conditions associated with this disease was my sensitivity to light but specifically blue light like that emitted by computers, charging cables etc. This type of light caused me severe pain. This was true even if the light was not directly pointed at my eyes.
“This disease prompted me to explore the relationship between colour and how it is perceived. I decided to use my art to try and experiment with colour and touch. I had previously experimented with how music is perceived as colour. I decided to combine the two to use music to determine how rhythm can be portrayed visually as well as tactilely. I used a modelling gel medium to create a raised surface corresponding to the rhythm of the music and then painted in the colours I saw as I listened to the music.
“SinceI had been treated by Moorfields I wanted to contribute something back to the hospital. In conjunction with fellow artist Suse Nielebock we have created different paintings inspired by different pieces of music. We want visitors and patients to touch the work and see if they can experience either the colour or the music or both.”
Artist Suse Nielebock said:
“I was immediately drawn to the concept of trying to visualise music and then taking this already quite challenging idea to another level and making these conceptualisations accessible to the visually impaired. I am living with grapheme-colour synaesthesia, which in my case also means being able to see music as a visual manifestation. However as it turns out that even if you can see music manifested it’s not exactly straightforward to paint a symphony let alone make it tactile enough for someone to feel and be able to connect with, which adds to the excitement to be part of this project, because it challenges me to create a whole new body of work in a direction I haven’t previously explored. I have embraced this endeavour as an artistic journey of discovery and I hope viewers are able to connect with the results.”
The art pieces can be viewed at our City Road site in the optometry corridor.
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