THUNDER BAY - Several young artists will see their work on display, which will help brighten the day of patients and residents at one local long-term care home.
The Lakehead Nurse Practitioner Clinic at McKellar Place held an art contest for local high school students to help fill some wall space following a recent expansion of the waiting area.
“We had an expansion earlier this year and we had some extra wall space so we were going to buy some art for the wall but then we thought we could incorporate some of the local talent from the high school students,” said Pam Delgaty, clinical director at the Lakehead Nurse Practitioner Clinic.
The clinic received more than 35 entries from all local high schools and the winners were chosen by the board of directors and staff during the annual general meeting.
Delgaty said the talent of the young artists was very impressive and some of the board members and staff decided to purchase the art work that wasn’t chosen.
Carley Kiiskila, a grade 8 student from La Verendrye High School, was one of the winners and her piece, Ponders, will hang in the waiting area.
“It’s really a great privilege and I’m really quite honoured,” she said.
Carley said she never thought about entering any contests until she learned about it from her teacher.
“I’ve never actually painted,” she said. “My grandmother does some water colour painting and occasionally I will help her. But this is the first time I tried textured acrylics.”
Her painting, which features two coy fish, is meant to be calming and relaxing and can be interpreted in anyway the viewer likes.
“It’s meant to be coy fish in a pond and the green can either be interpreted as trees or algae, depending on what the viewer sees,” she said. “It’s very chill and very relaxed. It’s kind of different. I didn’t really have a message in mind until later when I finished it. The message can be really what the viewer sees.”
After seeing the response and the quality of work this year, Delgaty said she hopes the clinic will be able to host an art contest every year.
With health care professionals often expressing the importance of kids staying active, staying creative is just as important.
“In the student population we really try to encourage them to be more physically active,” Delgaty said. “But I think we also have to think about the importance of the art as well. I don’t think that is appreciated enough. So we thought we would try to encourage that because we are always telling kids to get out there and exercise more but they also have to exercise their creative side as well.”