Richard Heikkilä-Sawan Receives IDEA Art Award

Posted: Fri, 2014-03-28 09:47

Settlement 2014 | oil on canvas, 36” x 168”

Vancouver General Hospital, like all hospitals, is a place you might not consider visiting unless you are acutely ill and then it is the very place you want to be. Known for outstanding medicine, VGH also boasts a significant art collection that speaks to the strong link between art and healing. The collection of over 1000 pieces contains works by Gordon Smith (’46), Gathie Falk, Martha Sturdy (’78), Jack Shadbolt (former faculty member), Scott McFarland, Stephen Waddell, Christos Dikeakos, Jock Macdonald (founding faculty member) and many other established and emerging artists.

Established in 2009, through a generous donation by two anonymous supporters, in consultation with the Healing Art Committee at the VGH & UBC Hospital Foundation and Emily Carr University, the annual IDEA Art Award is a juried competition that allows for the purchase of an art work by an emerging artist. 

Richard Heikkilä-Sawan We’re pleased to announce that third year student Richard Heikkilä-Sawan is the recipient of this year’s IDEA Art Award. His painting, Settlement, will join the permanent collection and will be displayed in the Sub-Acute Medical (SAM) Unit located in the Centennial Pavilion at Vancouver General Hospital.

“We’ve partnered with Emily Carr for 5 years and each year the students exceed our expectations,” says Jim O’Hara, Vice President, Leadership Giving, VGH & UBC Foundation.   “The artwork we have received through the IDEA Art Award has added to our collection’s goal of providing much need beauty and distraction for our patients, their families and those who toil in healthcare. I cannot imagine our hospitals without art. The positive intersection of art and healing is not only intuitive, it is now a scientific fact.”

Installation view View Richard's Artist Statement.

The IDEA Art Award affords artists the opportunity to consider their work within an  environment where it can make a real difference by acting not merely as a source of visual distraction but also as a source of inspiration during  difficult times. It provides emerging artists with an opportunity to have their work held in a prestigious collection while also contributing to the transformation of a vitally important site.